Commitment – Framework for Dreams to Become Reality

Hierarchy of Commitment - Conversation Circles, May 24, 2010.  Source:
Hierarchy of Commitment – Conversation Circles, May 24, 2010. Source:

So over the past few weeks, you have taken the risk and are motivated to bring your dreams to fruition.  You may not have realized this but these were the first steps that you are taking towards commitment.  According to the 16th President of the United States, who preserved the Union and was an astute politician, Abraham Lincoln believed that “Commitment is what transforms a promise into reality.” While the designer of the “Great Society” and the one who expanded the role of the US federal government in education and healthcare, the 36th President of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson (LBJ) has said, “The test before us as a people is not whether our commitments match our will and our courage; but whether we have the will and courage to match our commitments.”

Commitment is the allegiance that either you DO or you DON’T, there is no middle road.  Interest in doing or achieving something occurs when it is convenient to us and if circumstances permit.  However, commitment is when you accept no excuses, face the hardships, focus on the positives, understand the negatives and move forward with courage.  With this type of determination towards your dreams and being so motivated, how can you fail?  However, you have to make that pledge that you are all IN and there is no turning back so that your dreams can become your reality.

Commitment is a hard thing to sustain and you will go through various stages and may also move backwards.  As long as the drive to achieve is strong, you will become committed again to forge ahead and attain your dreams.  Jeff Janssen, the founder and president of the Janssen Sports Leadership Center, has created the popular concept of the commitment continuum that has the following six stages:

  1. Resistance – This is the dream killer stage where you focus on the negatives and what you CANNOT do.
  2. Reluctance – This is your wish stage.  You have an idea but are hesitant to put it in practice.
  3. Existent – This is your hope stage.  The dream is taking shape and there is some motivation.
  4. Compliant – This is your like and try stage.  Where you are finally putting the work towards your dream and are motivated.  You are excited to see the results and do the work.
  5. Committed – Now that you see some results and you feel good doing the work, you want your dreams to come true.
  6. Compelled – This is when your dream is your calling, your motivation is at its peak and your commitment is in full force.  There is no turning back now!

As you review, the commitment continuum scale, assess and analyze the stage that you are experiencing.  If you are in the first two stages, quietly think about what is stopping you.  The answer will come from within you and mostly is driven by fear.  If you have arrived at the middle two stages, then ensure that you are motivated to keep performing.  There is no room for complacency at this point.  If you are positioned at the last two stages, then the work is natural and comes from within you.  Don’t stop now!  Moreover, if you fall back in the continuum, it is okay.  Be kind to yourself and think about what changes you need to make to transform your dreams into reality.  All of us fall, it is about how quickly we can dust ourselves off and move steadily and swiftly on our path by learning from those difficulties.

As we partake in the celebration of Mother’s Day on Sunday, May 10, 2015, let’s honour these wonderful women who were committed in their goal(s) to give their children a better life, safe environments, a good education and values that make us better human beings.  In return for their sacrifices, persistence and hard work, let’s take on the duty towards our dreams with the fuel of motivation and the framework of commitment.

Author: Anjali Chudasama

Dare to Dream – Take a Chance

Source: Vine Your Earth Day Good Deeds With #GivingVine by Eric Larson, April 22, 2013

Lately, I have been thinking and reading a lot about envisioning your success and do what is your calling.  Something that has been very motivating to me in this quest are the following two quotes.  First is from the longest serving First Lady of the United States Anna Eleanor Roosevelt, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”  With her dreams and perseverance, she made great strides for human rights by overseeing the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Second inspirational quote comes for the Canadian athlete, humanitarian and cancer research activist, Terrance Stanley “Terry” Fox, “I just wish people would realise that anything is possible if you try.  Dreams are made if people try.”  Just with that thought and his wonderful actions he left the Marathon of Hope as his legacy that to date has raised over $650 million (Canadian) for cancer research.

Sometimes when you speak to people about your dreams, they will deter you from your path, will want to protect you from disappointment, may want you to be practical and tell you maybe how to go about achieving your tasks.  They are really trying to be helpful and care for you.  However, when you dream, you have to be willing to take a risk and make a change.  For all humans, risk and change are very scary concepts.  Out of fear and concern, many well wishers may want you to rethink your path as it is not easy and is filled with perils and hurdles.

Nevertheless, these are YOUR dreams.  They can be achieved and will require tears, blood, sweat, hard work and steadfastness.  It might not be per your timetable and it might not even be how you envisioned it, but this is your dream so you need to live it.  According to Merriam-Webster, one of the many definitions of a dream includes “a strongly desired goal or purpose and something that fully satisfies a wish.”  So why are we giving up on our goals and something that makes our wishes come true?

Fear and anxiety paralyzes our wonderful quest to continue the travel on our created yellow brick road.  We will worry about people’s opinions of us, what will happen, what if we fail and many other considerations.  Yet, if this is your purpose in life then shouldn’t you give it at least a try and continue in its pursuit.  It is and will be a difficult road but I think in the end it is worth it!  Just the self-satisfaction, that you tried will inspire and empower you.  Terry Fox further elaborates: “Even if I don’t finish (Marathon of Hope, his dream), we need others to continue.  It’s got to keep going without me.”

Think about it this way, your loved ones especially your parents and grandparents had dreams that their children will do better and achieve more than them.  They made all the sacrifices to ensure the security of your future and were successful.  However, in some cases, they might not have been around to view the fruition of that dream but that did not mean that the aspiration had to stop.

Our ideals and purposes are powerful and have the ability to change many things and people around us for the better.  Let’s not give up on these dreams that can make a wonderful difference in this world.  Instead, let’s be supportive and helpful so that we are all allowed to dream big and feel that they can be achieved if we just tried.  Lets realize the beauty of our dreams so our futures can be bright.

As we approach Earth Day or International Mother Earth Day on Wednesday, April 22, 2015, let’s make every day earth day and help the environment.  Let’s dare to dream to make this earth a better and healthier place for all of us on #EarthDay2015.

Author: Anjali Chudasama

Fight the Timidity and Useless Inertia

Sunrise in the Tonquin Valley-c2a9-2011-christopher-martin-2457
Canadian Rockies Landscapes: Sunrise in the Tonquin Valley Christopher Martin Photography, 2011

The above quote from American author and poet Maya Angelou has inspired me to start this blog.  As we are about to begin the International Random Acts of Kindness Week (February 9-15, 2015), I thought what better way to provide kindness not only to myself but to others by explaining what the above quote by Dr. Angelou (as she liked to be called) means to me.

Timidity means “to fear” and is often the cause of the fear that we experience.  In this day and age where independence and ambition are heavily touted and promoted, we are discouraged from showing any vulnerability.  We are not allowed to show our fears, weaknesses or anxieties.  Also, if we do admit to these occurrences, we are told to deal with them.  These emotions are so overwhelming that dealing with the entire issue can lead to an individual’s downfall and detriment.

Instead, let’s take a very small step to deal and “fight” the timidity.  For example, if a person is afraid to speak in public, let them at least present for five minutes in front of their best friend.  This will give the individual the courage to be able to present in front of five people, moving up to ten and so on.  We are just told in general terms that there is nothing to fear, everything is going to be alright and/or we should face our fears.  However, it might be helpful to provide us with some instances or tips on how to start and accomplish this process.  The small step of combating timidity will prepare you for fighting the huge battle against your fear.

One of the smallest but yet biggest impact that you can create is to admit to yourself that you are afraid of something.  That will release you from your own destructive thought process and feelings.  Be vulnerable and open with yourself.  Once you do that, you can open up to others about your timidity.  Believe me, your sharing will alleviate the other person’s worry and it will free you from your own imprisonment.  Don’t discount the impact that you will have on another person and in turn they will have on you when you share your anxieties.  There is no shame in that.

In the inertial reference frame, Newton’s first law of motion states, “A body in rest stays in rest.”  This is true for humans as well in terms of their emotional well being.  Useless inertia makes you heavy and keeps you at rest.  This will lead to further fearfulness and anxiety.  We have to rise above this inertia.  Expanding this law further, “The body will stay in rest unless an external force acts upon it.”  For the heaviness to fade and disappear, a good external force is our ability to share our concerns and issues with individuals that we love and trust.  Your support system will accept, love and understand you without any questions and will act as the external force that you require to step out of your timidity.  No one should suffer in silence.  Take the first step to talk and share.

These first steps can be something very small like smile at yourself as you look in the mirror, smile at a stranger, get out of the house, go for a walk, greet someone you don’t know or take the first step to do something that you have been afraid to do.  That one act of kindness and courage that you are showing will just make someone else’s day.  But you will never know, until you try it.

So as we start this week performing random acts of kindness, lets take an oath to be kind to ourselves first.  This should not just be for a week but forever.  Let’s rise above this timidity that leads towards darkness and this useless inertia that causes heaviness.  Let’s take that first step of courage and motion towards happiness and light so that we realize our fullest potential as human beings.