I’m enjoying Stephen M.R. Covey’s book, The Speed of Trust. His thesis is that trust is the factor that changes everything in a business, non-profit organization/church, team or family. In a business, a high degree of trust saves time and money.
Trust is not only a matter of character, but also of competence. By working from “the inside out” you can actually change the level of trust in any relationship. The first step, however, is to build self trust. What does that even mean? It is the confidence we have in ourselves – ability to achieve goals and to keep commitments. We need to first become a person who is worthy of trust – key principle is credibility.
Covey discusses four “cores” of credibility. The first one is integrity. This is integratedness, walking your talk, being congruent inside and out. Someone with integrity acts in accordance with his or her values and beliefs. Some of the biggest violations of trust are violations of integrity.
In order to increase your integrity, you can:
- Make and keep commitments to yourself
- Stand for something
- Be open
In the area of making and keeping commitments to yourself, we increase our self-confidence every time we make a large or small commitment to ourselves. In order to do this, we should not make too many commitments (don’t over-commit!). We should treat the commitments we make to ourselves with as much respect as you do with your commitments to others. Avoid impulsive commitments. Lastly, if keeping a commitment becomes hard change your behavior to match your commitment.
A few of the personal areas that I think of related to making and keeping commitments to myself are:
- Regular exercise
- Depend on God and keep asking Him to help me see people how He sees them (and then treat them accordingly)
- Lots of reading and discuss my reading with others
- Do not become self-focused or act in my own self interest, but in the interest of others (starting with my wife and sons)
- If I ever have a chance to spend good time with my sons (especially reading to them), do that and put other tasks aside to be done later
- Follow through on what I say I will do
- Stay organized
But, I know there are a lot more. And, I want to keep thinking about this. I’m curious what other people think of in terms of their commitments to themselves.