Committing to re-commit

A lot of the literature around goal (and system) setting focuses on the act of commitment. We might make the commitment on a special day (read: new years), break it down to actionable components or a habit by using systems thinking, share it with friends or an accountability group, and so on.

While all of the above matters, I’ve observed that the biggest leading indicator to a goal’s success is our commitment to re-commit to it as often as possible.

We don’t acquire worthwhile habits or goals because we made a commitment. We achieve them because, in doing so, we commit to re-commit until we make them happen.

The takeaway for us, then, should be to be thoughtful and intentional about the re-commitment plan for any goal or system we commit to. A good re-commitment plan consists of frequent checkpoints – these could be weekly or even daily depending on importance. It doesn’t require anything fancy – a simple question at the end of our daily to do list to spark reflection works. The important thing is to surround ourselves with reminders.

There is nothing as important as the act of re-committing because stumbling and falling as we pursue goals or meaningful habits are inevitable.

And, recommitting is the equivalent of the quiet voice that reminds us that failure is not the falling down, it is the staying down.