I broke a promise to myself and I’m not proud of it, but I did use it as an opportunity to learn.
There I was, standing outside the room of my first Toastmasters meeting and I froze. I stared at the open door for a few seconds when I was instantly worried they might see me.
I totally bailed.
Why did I bail? I went there on purpose to check out Toastmasters. No one made me; I was doing this for me. I was doing this to improve my speaking skills that will help me get my message out there…..but, I couldn’t go in. WTF?
Mad at myself as I walked to the car, I promised myself next week I would go to Toastmasters.
Lessons on Keeping Promises
Bailing does not feel good. Breaking a promise to myself and I never want to do that again. As much as I want to learn and move on, I don’t want to forget the feeling of bailing on myself, so I won’t do it again.
I bailed on setting up my OWN BOOK LAUNCH. When I finally got past the guilt and booked it, the launch was cancelled due to the coronavirus. If I had’ve kept that promise, it would’ve happened as planned. Lesson learned!
What I Learned from Breaking a Promise to Myself
- ‘Remember Tomorrow.’ A favourite quote of mine pops into my head when I’m about to get in my own way. Think about how you are going to feel tomorrow when you don’t complete a task. Do you want to feel like you’re moving forward or stuck?
- Forgive yourself. I beat myself up about it bailing that night. I told myself the dumbest things, like I’d never be good at it anyway and that I won’t fit in. Seriously? If you break a promise to yourself, let it go, but don’t let it happen again. Here’s my blog post about forgiving yourself.
- Gain focus. What is your goal? Why did you want to do that thing in the first place? When you define your ‘why’ you will be unable stop moving forward.
- Plan it out. I find scheduling my time very helpful. I make a task list or an hourly schedule for what I need to get done each day. When you know what your supposed to be doing, it’s easier to get it done because it’s structured.
Since that day, I remind myself of these lessons to stop me in my tracks. It’s easy to rationalize why you shouldn’t do something, but is it true? You KNOW how you’ll feel when you break a promise to yourself, so by setting up a plan, gaining focus and not beating yourself up will help keep you on the right path.
You got this!
Lisa, Your Bucket List Coach