Is a handshake enough? I remember when it used to be said that a handshake was a strong enough bond of commitment and a representation of respect to the other person. Now, it certainly takes more than a handshake to honor your word. I still don’t know if it has to do with age, maturity or if it is a matter of choice, but honoring you word can be a very difficult task when you lack responsibility and commitment. It all falls in your willingness to commit and respect towards others. Whether it is in your personal or professional life, every day we face situations where we poorly give our word, or in other words, we say agree and “commit” to a lot of things. I’m sure it has happened to you.
How about at the office when you were asked to bring a dish for the potluck and later on at home you realize you can’t come thru with it for whatever reason, or if you are a business owner, how many times have you over promise something? A deadline to a project or a delivery of a service? In our life, we all have those situations where it is easy to say yes and “commit”.
I believe the biggest mistake we make when it comes to honoring our word, is that we take it for granted and we just commit without thinking about it. Not being accountable for what you said you were going to do not only affects you but it affects how people see you. You lose credibility and respect. What you do will always be more important that what you say. Think of what Theodore Roosevelt said, “I care not what others think of what I do, but I care very much about what I think of what I do! That is character!”
The key to successful relationships is keeping your word as an act of integrity. It portrays you as the person you are. In a positive or negative light. You choose how you want to be seen.
The next time you encounter with a situation where you are to commit to something follow these three tips that have help me how to honor my word:
- Before you say yes, think.
Don’t act out of kindness. Be sure you know what it entails for you to say yes. Do you have the time to actually do that you say yes to? Is it something that is within your reach?
- Don’t offer yourself to do something if you were not asked.
Often times we fail to honor our word when we feel our help it’s not being appreciated. So, hold your horses and ask for your help to be needed.
- Be present.
Be 100% aware of what you are committing to. They are no excuses. The moment you give you word to something is because you know what it entails. If you can’t commit to it, say it! And make the necessary adjustments.
Be truthful to who you are and before anything honor your word. Let’s bring the handshake back on style for the sake of successful relationships.