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Are You Interested, or Are You Committed?

Oct 21, 2023

“There’s a difference between interest and commitment.  When you’re interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit.  When you are committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results.”

                                                                                                - Art Turock


Several years ago, I was in a conference and heard a speaker make a cute little statement regarding the concept of commitment.  It went like this...


“I had bacon and eggs this morning for the breakfast, the chicken was involved, but the pig was COMMITTED."  


That statement, as trite as it might be, has always stuck with me.  How committed am I really to the things I say I am committed to? 


Or as super coach, Steve Chandler asks, 


"Are you interested or are you committed?"


Ready to FINALLY be committed, check out my Breaking Through Coaching Program 


Throughout my career as a martial arts instructor, I have been privileged to teach literally thousands of students in the last four decades. 


Of those students, I have had the honor of guiding hundreds to the rank of Black Belt and beyond.  The one common denominator that existed among all of these students was not physical prowess (e.g. strength, flexibility or athletic ability).  It had nothing to do with gender, socio-economic background or education.  Rather, it had to do with their level of commitment.  Or as we often say in the martial arts, 


"A Black Belt is a White Belt that Never Quit"


In my work with martial arts students and life-coaching clients (as well as in my own life) I have seen three disciplines, that when followed, help to anchor one's commitment on their path to making their dreams a reality.  There are:


1) Pre-commitment - This means committing to the action beforehand and setting up in advance the things needed to follow through. 


For example, if you have committed to take a morning run, don't allow yourself to make the decision to exercise when you wake up in a warm bed.  Rather, set your shoes and running gear at the foot of your bed the night before and get up and take the action you have pre-committed to beforehand.


2) Schedule It - Whatever you deem important and are committed to, deserves a planned space in your calendar. 


If "date night" with your spouse is something you have clearly committed to, anchor it in your calendar and plan around it.  It does not move.  Chances are that if you plan to do your date "after everything else is done" it will never happen.


3) Focus on the 1% - When looking to commit to something that takes us out of our comfort zones, we can often "over-commit". 


As author Lanny Bassham states, this doesn't just take us out of our comfort zone, it takes us to the panic zone.  This is where the extreme discomfort of going too fast, too far, too soon snaps us back like a rubber band to our original state of comfort. 


Rather, Bassham recommends going to the stretch zone, which I recommend means making about 1% improvement, each day, from our current state. 


This gradual 1% movement done consistently over time can net incredible results.


For example, if you made a daily 1% improvement in an activity over the course of one year, by day 365, you’d be 37 times better than when you began.  Carry that out over to a second year of consistent daily improvement, you would not be 74 times better, but 1,400 times better.  Do that over 5 years, you would be (wait for it), 76,000,000 times better.


Or as author James Clear says, “Good habits don’t add up, they compound.”


So, when looking at your next great intention you want to realize, are you committed or simply interested?  Are you ready to take the consistent actions necessary to make it a reality?


Or are you just hungry?  Bacon and eggs, anyone?


Chris Natzke                                                                                                        

Black Belt Leadership Speaking & Coaching



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