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Are We Really Honoring Our Word?


"One of the worst things we can do as human beings is to break promises to ourselves."

— James McPartland

Access Point: A Leader Builds People| Blog post by James McPartland | Speaker, Author, Executive Coach

You have heard me speak on integrity often and maybe you’ve made strides in doing what you said you were going to do.

You used to say “yes” to every invitation — only to cancel plans the night before. You used to get bogged down with work because you would take on too much. Now, you say “no” more often, you take time before you commit to an event, you call people back, and you don’t cancel as many meetings.

You’ve changed and become someone who others can trust, and your relationships have improved and deepened.

But what about when it comes to the commitments you make with yourself?

Honoring our word doesn’t just mean the commitments we make with others, but also the commitments we make to ourselves. The most important thing we can do is focus on the word we give to ourselves.

  • “I told myself I was going to work out today, but I had too much going on today.”

  • “I wanted to wake up earlier, but I got to bed too late the night before.”

  • “I’ve been wanting to start this business, but I have all these other priorities right now.”

When we don’t follow through with a commitment we have promised ourselves, we subconsciously tell ourselves we aren’t worth it. When we get into the habit of breaking promises to ourselves each time we make a goal and commitment, we have evidence that proves we won’t succeed.

So how do we break this habit of not honoring our word to ourselves?


Start small and stack up.

Like building blocks, eventually, you will have a tower of evidence to prove to yourself you can make commitments and not break them.


Have been wanting to wake up an hour earlier?

Set your alarm for just 5 minutes earlier, and next week another 5 minutes earlier. Eventually, you will hit your goal.


Want to get more into reading?

Set a small goal of reading one chapter or one page, whatever is doable for you right now.


Want to start a new business but don’t have time to put pen to paper?

Just focus on it for 10 minutes a day.



Let’s break the habit of breaking promises.


These small commitments will stack up and will prove to us that we are worth it and can accomplish our goals. They will fortify the relationship we have with ourselves.


Always remember that the relationship you have with yourself, the word you give to yourself, is one of the most important aspects of living a life of integrity.





James McPartland | Keynote Speaker, Author, Executive Coach