Many people have a fear of making a promise. They worry that if they don’t keep it they’ll look bad. They also know that things out of their control may come up and stop them from doing what they promised. The result is they say things like “I’ll try” or just nod when someone tells them they need something. This basically avoids any real commitment commitment. But there is no real collaboration if there is no commitment to working together with accountability.

We need to rethink what many of us hold a promise to be. If we agree that a promise to do “x” is:
· An agreement that I will do ‘x’ unless something beyond my control happens
· If something beyond my control does happen, I will do everything within my control to counter act it
· I also agree to let you know at the earliest sign that something beyond my control might happen

This enables us to work together, do our best, without guilt. Note, that agreements like fidelity, are always within your control. So there is no ‘out’ here for that.

Agreements with each other are promises about how we are going to act. How we are going to collaborate and work together. About communication and intention. We need to agree with each other what they mean and that we will keep them.

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