Tentative Plans

Do you make tentative plans? Do you say, here is what I might do tomorrow, but I am leaving the door open for something better to walk in? Do you hedge on your commitments just in case something better comes along? If this sounds like you, then you are connected to your authentic self.

Your true self, which I like to call my soul, is always ready for an upgrade. She’s always open to a new idea. She is constantly seeking more. Not that she is dissatisfied with now, but as an eternal being, there is always more. But you could be blocking the more from coming in because you have bought into an antiquated idea that says all commitments must be honored.

Commitments are just ideas. They are an idea, today, of what you are going to do in the future. As an eternal being, you are always growing and changing so a commitment you made yesterday could have no application to who you are today. My best advice? Start seeing commitments as maybes.

In the spiritual realm, a perfectly good explanation for not honoring a commitment is this: I changed my mind. That’s it. No excuses. No protracted stories getting us out of what we no longer want to do. No long winded explanations. Just a short and simple declaration that everyone understands, as we all change our minds all the time.

When I observe people who are miserable, which I do as a quasi-science experiment so that I don’t end up like them, I notice that many people are miserable because they feel stuck in a commitment that they no longer enjoy. The job has grown boring. The house is tired. The relationship is stale. And in some twisted logic that centers on commitment, they make themselves miserable.

I am not promoting that we all quit what bothers us. But I am suggesting that if you truly are miserable with a commitment, you are doing no one a service by staying. In fact, you are likely bringing everyone around you down with you decision to be miserable and stay.

Here is what I have found. I get to choose how I frame everything I let into, and keep, in my life. I get to decide how to think about every part of my life today. I get to create thoughts that either support me, or weigh me down, based on where I am today. And for any true commitment that I have made (meaning, one that I intend to honor on purpose) then I make sure to keep my attitude positive and my thinking light.

I have made commitments to my husband and children, which I see as wonderful ways to know myself, to love others, and to be loved. I have made a commitment, for now, to my employer, which allows me to receive payment that I use to support my family. I have commitments that I make to attend, to purchase, or to do, and I treat those commitments as something that could change over time. Meaning, I want to honor those commitments today, but I could change my mind tomorrow.

The only rules are the ones you make up. I suggest you pick a few commitments in your life that you truly want to honor, and honor them. Then see the rest of your commitments as up for grabs. Maybe you follow them; maybe you don’t. And when you don’t, I hope you say to yourself, I am honoring me, which is far more important than honoring an idea that tells me what to do with my life.

Where can you let yourself off the hook for a commitment that has gone stale? Where can you exercise good judgment and compassion for yourself by not pretending that you are going to do something that you don’t want to do? Where can you be more judicious in your use of the word commitment and instead start saying maybe more often?

As in, maybe I will attend.

As in, I might do that task.

As in, I could be open to that but I will decide when the day arrives.

Commitments are not a requirement for spirituality. They are man-made ideas that bind us up. Choose which commitments you plan to honor and honor them. Then, let all the little ones slide until you can articulate what you want.

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