Last February, I spent a few weeks on my back with a herniated disk and pinched nerves in my neck. (Yes, it hurt). One of the worst parts of spending time in bed was missing my daily indulgence of visiting Starbuck’s for my coffee in the morning. One morning, my amazing wife brought me home a nice, hot Starbucks mocha. I usually don’t look to my coffee cup for inspiration, but laid up and having not much else to do, I started reading “The Way I See It” on the side of the cup. I really liked the quote, but, in a Vicodin-Espresso induced haze, I lost track of the cup and forgot the quote. Well, here I am over a year later sitting in Starbuck’s sipping a mocha and what do you know, I got the same cup. Well, not the very same cup, that would be kind of gross, but I think you get what I mean. I thought, hmmm, maybe karma is telling me something. Here’s what my cup said:
“The irony of commitment is that it’s deeply liberating – in work, in play, in love. The act frees you from the tyranny of your internal critic, from the fear that likes to dress itself up and parade as rational hesitation. To commit is to remove your head as the barrier to your life.” – Anne Morriss
Well, I’d have to say I’m glad I found this cup again and I’m glad I found it now. I’ve been very non-committed to writing my blog in the past few weeks. Things have been swirling around in my professional and personal life and I just couldn’t focus. My blogging and Tweeting had been taking too much time away from my personal life. So, I stopped really putting my all into my blog. In fact, I stopped writing all together for almost a month. Then I realized I missed it. Somehow, I needed to commit to a better balance between my real life and my “online life”. So, that’s commitment number one: I’ll continue to blog and Twitter but with a much greater respect for my personal time. It’s a commitment to those that I love and a commitment to all of you who read my blog (and yes, I love all of you too, but in a different way). OK, got that out of the way and I’m feeling good. I’m breathing again!
But more than that, this cup really woke me up (and not just from the double espresso) to my growing desire to write a book “one of these days“. I’ve had this idea in my mind for a book about the power of collaboration and it’s impact on innovation in successful organizations for some time and I’ve kept putting it off for a variety of “really good” reasons. Hmmm, can you say internal critic and fear? Apparently I can’t, so I did what Anne Morriss said, and I dressed it up as rational hesitation. I had a million excuses why I couldn’t start writing it. Well, I think I’m going to go out on a limb here and free myself by finally, openly committing to writing this book that I’ve had inside me for a long time. Aaaah, I feel better already. Two big commitments and I didn’t die, I didn’t implode, I’m still here. And because I believe deeply in commitment, I feel deeply liberated by openly making these commitments. Wow, what a great feeling!
So, what’s holding you back from doing something you’re passionate about? Maybe today is your day too. Maybe you just need to make a commitment and go for it. I promise, it won’t hurt (unless you’re committing to finally getting that tattoo you’ve always dreamed of). Go ahead and make your commitment right here for everyone else to read. Tell us what you’re passionate about and what you’re going to commit to.