What Commitments Are You Making?

November 5th, 2019
Do you always do what you say you will do and should you be doing them in the first place?!


How many events do you go to where there are tens of people who are no shows?  I find this particularly frustrating when there is a waiting list which hasn’t been engaged because people have not been organised or courteous to send their apologies.  Of course, people are sometimes ill, and other stuff simply comes up – but I can’t help notice that this is often due to a big dose of over-committing.  And, as I have written before, a touch of the FOMO (fear of missing out).

Our time is finite and the unanticipated poor attendance at meetings, events and similar should not be inevitable if more people do a minimum of 3 things.

(1) Pausing or stopping before you say an automatic yes.

Always consider an event or commitment in the context of that particular week, month or even year.  How important is it that you participate?  What will that activity provide you with? What value will you gain and what value can you give? Once you have answered these questions, only then are you ready to say yes or no.   Don’t put your time under unnecessary pressure by doing things just because someone invited you to.

(2) Being proactive if things change.

What you might assess (above) as being a priority one week, may not be by the time it comes around.  However, this will rarely change, except on the old occasions of illness or crisis an hour or two before the event.  If participation is not longer a priority, be proactive.  Contact the organiser as soon as you know that the event is no longer a priority.  To do this effectively, you need to keep an eye on the commitments in your diary at least a week ahead.  Check what you have committed to at the same time as you goal set for the week and if you don’t do this routinely, make a start!

(3) Having a focus.

This links to the first point.  If you know what your focus is for that week or month at least, prioritising the activities that help you to deliver on what is most important, in work or at home, is much easier.

So, what are the right activities for your focus? 

These centre around the work that must get done in order for you to achieve your outcome or goal at any given time. Therefore you must identify what you want to achieve and know who can help you get there.  If you don’t have answers to either, find them.  Talk to peers, work with mentors, but get the answer before you waste anymore time.

One of the first activities I undertake with those I mentor is to elicit where focus needs to be applied.  This may be on gaps in their business which need plugging ahead of new activity or focussing on the development of something new.  I often start working with a business because they believe they are ready to engage new connections to scale their impact.  However, we often find that they need to revisit some of the basics in their business – operationally and strategically before they are in a position to engage effectively with new partners.

Preparation takes time.  Arranging to meet people is the relatively easy bit, but to ensure you are making the right commitments at the right time, build preparation into your diary too.  Without this, you can waste a lot of time at meaningless events and meetings because you are unable to engage fully.  Commit to the right activities at the right time.

I received this feedback from a client, Tania, this week, ahead of relaunching my website.  She wrote

“Following a series of personal and work set-backs I met with Bethan and within a matter of a few hours I understood my value, felt focussed and knew what direction I needed to move in. I can honestly say that six or so months later I am receiving offers I would have never dreamed possible.”

The success Tania is now experiencing is entirely due to reconnecting with her value, what she set her business up to do and focussing on the right work.  She is no longer splitting herself in multiple directions, attending unnecessary meetings and events, and with this new focus is attracting and making the most of new opportunities.


Photo by Stefan Cosma on Unsplash

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