When your integrity wavers, you’re flaking out – or as a client of mine with British roots calls it – “you’re pfaffing!”
It can wreck your career + personal reputation … even if you think everyone’s fine with it.
Trust me they’re not.
Accepting “what is” means accepting when you don’t want to. And not using flakey language to get yourself out of feeling bad.
You free yourself when you speak with integrity.
The truth can be spoken with the utmost compassion for you + the other.
It requires being real.
(Yes, you can be brutal with your kindness. Emphasis on kindness.)
Trust me, I speak from experience.
So, Before You…
Commit to something out of guilt and obligation … before you ask for advice that you have no intention of taking … before you decide to do something that you can’t really afford … before you apply for a job posting just to see what happens … before you ask for an informational interview or a networking meeting attached to a job and not the process of creating a real human relationship … before you find a loophole in the fine print or argue the semantics of what you “thought was happening” … before you make your inability to be impeccable with your word someone else’s problem and burden (thinking that they “should” understand and it’s their problem if they can’t or don’t) … or even before letting yourself down by not keeping your exercise date/play date/coffee date/reading date/be by yourself date … be here now.
No matter what the circumstance, flaking out makes everyone feel bad.
And then you have to do something with the bad feelings. Push them away. Stuff them down. Ignore (more stuffing). Avoid (more pushing away).
Please look and see what you’re really doing:
You think you don’t matter when in fact you do.
If you must, give yourself permission to show up tired, show up scared, show up because you said you would, show up authentically. No one expects you to be perfect. Do this until … you get better at knowing yourself.
And try what I do:
I’m the worst for having time fantasies about how much time and energy I have – so I know this works great. I want to do it all. My ego thinks I can. But I know my ego.
Under-scheduling allows for space in my life to say ‘yes’ spontaneously. The other part of my strategy is to be honest with myself about what isn’t going to be possible.
When you keep your promises to yourself, you keep your promises to others. Automatically. Magically.
Just think of all the happy endings awaiting you when you give your word and mean it.
So, tell me… what are you going to decline like you mean it? And what are you going to accept like you mean it?