Growing up I received many promises. Promises to go do things, promises of riches, and promises of the future. My dad made many promises to me. He told me many different things of what he was going going to do for me or what we were going to do.
The promises which never came true are the promises I remember most. My dad always had a ship about to come in with a wealth of money on it. He had bright ideas and ambitions. Many of which never came to fruition. He worked hard. He never slacked off. It was never his work ethic leaving him without. It was simply his ability to make promises he would never keep and dreams he never set as goals.
I find myself making these same promises. Not promises about wealth or success. Promises about the right thing to do. Promises including words such as, “I will do that.” or “I will take care of that next week.” or “I will talk to them next time I see them.” These promises are right. They are the promises I should be making. These are the promises I need to be making. However, not all of these promises lead to action.
Not all of these promises am I writing on my calendar.
Not all of these promises am I championing.
Some of these promises I’m even making with the thought, “I have no idea how or if I’ll do this.” But, I still make these promises. Making these promises may not be the same as trying to be your family’s savior or hero, like my father tried. However, making these promises knowing I will never follow up on them is not healthy for me or for the people I am making promises to. If I do not have the ability or wherewithal to follow through on my word; then, I need to not make these promises. I need to say, “No, I cannot do this.” or “I cannot give you my word I can do this. I do not have the ability to do it right now.”
Fortunately, right now I am breaking promises to people and nothing of value hangs in the balance. In a few degrees, I will be breaking promises to people and things and I will not be able to pay the bill for damage I have done. I have to break the cycle now.
What cycle do you need to break? What promise do you need to keep?