The first step in the Success Formula Commitment or Intention. This is where we go from wondering to actually deciding. Rather than just fantasizing about something we make a decision to do something about what we want.

In this step we say an inner ‘yes’ to what we want. We have decided to take it seriously and are committing time and attention to making it happen. Rather than wishing we had that great job, or wishing we had that wonderful partner, we decide we are going to make it happen.

We have then moved from having a loose, vague attitude to the thing we want to becoming engaged to it. We have made a commitment. We have not necessarily made a commitment for life. We may have just made a commitment to trying it out.

We may not always know what we want, but we usually know what we are willing to try. We may have apparently conflicting wants: we may want freedom; and we may want security. We may not be sure how much we want something, and how much energy to give to getting it, till we have some kind of taster to try it out first. We can decide to walk a little way along a path before we  commit to going a long way. Other times, and other situations, we may have to just go for it and see what happens.

Through exploring and examining what we want we begin to boil things down and clarify what things matter enough to give something about them. One way or another, we will likely end up with a strong sense of commitment to some particular goals. This commitment is what triggers us to beginning to make it happen.

If we are afraid to make this commitment. If we fear what it will be asked of us, or if we feel undeserving or unworthy of what we want, we may stop ourselves from committing in the first place. We may want more success in our job, but fear the pressure which will be put on us to continue to succeed. We may want a loving partner, but fear what we may have to give up to have one.

Reaching a level of commitment is not something we ought to rush or bully ourselves into. Sometimes we may need to cajole ourselves along or give ourselves a friendly push, but bullying ourselves is not a good way to start. If we feel afraid we need to look at our fear and see what it is telling us. There may be a way to reduce our fear by going ahead in another way which is less risky. We might decide to live with a potential partner before marrying them. We might decide to include things in a contract with a potential business associate, such as how we can exit the situation if it no longer works for us, so that there is an answer to our concerns. We work with our fear and manage it appropriately. Sometimes fear will only lessen after we go ahead. Courage mostly lives on the other side of action. Before we go into action and really commit, we may have to take a few other steps…