Have you ever had someone let you down by not following through with what was promised? Perhaps it was a family member or a friend, or maybe it was a business or a co-worker. It’s disappointing and frustrating, isn’t it?
I, Mr. Ordinary Life, find this habit to be both disappointing and frustrating. In fact, if there is one characteristic of people that frustrates me most, it is others not doing what they say they’ll do. Now, don’t get me wrong and think I don’t like people; I enjoy people and I enjoy being around people with all types of personalities. I find this energizing and fun!
The first question I like to ask myself when I see or experience something that I do not like in someone else is: Am I guilty of this habit, too? Sometimes, we as humans experience habits about others that annoy us, yet we ourselves are guilty of those same habits. Now why should we expect someone else to change a bad habit if we ourselves are guilty of that same bad habit? We have no right to expect such.
I have come to accept this habit in those I know that exhibit this occasionally, frequently, and essentially all the time. While an individual is responsible for his or her own behavior, I also realize that we all have flaws and I like to focus on the good in people rather than the negative. When I practice this habit of focusing on the good in others, I find that this changes how I see others and, ultimately, how I treat others.
The focus of this post is not to rant about the bad habit of people not following through on a promise but instead to present 7 reasons why doing what you say you’ll do is both extraordinary and powerful!
1. Doing what you say you’ll do is increasingly rare. How many people or businesses do you know that make it a habit to do what they say they’ll do? Doing what you say you’ll do sets you apart from many people and businesses. Standing out and being different are extraordinary and powerful!
2. When you do what you say you’ll do, those around you can depend upon you. I cannot tell you how extraordinary and powerful this is! Being a person that your family, friends, boss, co-workers, and even customers can depend upon is both contagious and attractive. You’re likely to have better relationships, better friends, and a better career. Dependability is an important characteristic in relationships, friendships, and the workplace.
3. Keeping your word makes life easier and more enjoyable. Not only does doing what you say you’ll do make life easier and more enjoyable for you, it makes life easier and more enjoyable for those around you. After all, we’re all in this thing known as life together!
4. Doing what you say you’ll do feels good. Have you ever gone above and beyond to follow through on a promise you made, despite the fact that it was not easy to do so? It felt pretty good, didn’t it? The fact is, following through on a promise and doing what you say you’ll do is a great act of kindness and respect toward others, and it leaves both the other person and you feeling great!
5. Keeping your word creates a powerful cycle of doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. Do you want others to follow through on what they say they’ll do when you are on the receiving end? Of course you do! Keeping your word and doing what you say you’ll do creates a powerful and extraordinary cycle of giving and then expecting the same in return.
6. Doing what you say you’ll do can make or break a business. Have you ever been in a situation where a business made a promise to you and then didn’t keep it? I’ll bet you were at the very least disappointed, perhaps angry, and maybe even furious depending upon the situation. Businesses that do what they say they’ll do tend to have a customer base that is more loyal, and, as a result, these businesses tend to succeed while businesses that do not keep their word struggle and even fail.
7. Keeping a promise gives you peace. Have you ever broken a promise or failed to follow through on something you said you would do? It’s not a good feeling, is it? Now, this does not mean that you should say “yes” to everyone and over commit yourself. You should absolutely not do that! It is better to say “no” when you know following through may not be possible than to say “yes” and then fail to follow through. Peace is extraordinary and powerful! Peace allows you to function without the potentially debilitating distractions of broken promises and saying you’ll do something knowing you won’t.
There you have it! 7 reasons why doing what you say you’ll do is both extraordinary and powerful! Following through on what you say you’ll do is likely to benefit you and others; failing to follow through on what you say you’ll do is likely to impair you and others.
One last tip from Mr. Ordinary Life: When initially making a promise or saying I’ll follow through on something, if any details are unclear, I like to ask questions that clarify what the promise is that I am committing to. I find this to be especially important when there are many specifics involved. These are the promises that will trip you up if you’re not careful! I liken these situations to reading the fine print. Saying you’ll do something that does not have many specifics involved is often far easier, though you still want to consider the expectations of the others this involves as a lack of specifics does not mean there are not expectations.
Remember, doing what you say you’ll is both extraordinary and powerful…and Mr. Ordinary Life has a deep appreciation for people that practice this great habit! Thank you!