Make a commitment

You need to make some sort of commitment before you start.

It’s easy to say, “I’m going to do this thing!” But before you know it, the slog is real, the grind isn’t fun, and you’re not really sure why you’re doing any of this anymore.

Making a commitment either to yourself or someone else reinforces what you’re doing. It gives you the opportunity to truly be serious about it.

Some people might shy away from making a commitment because they aren’t too sure if it’s something they can stick to.

However, a commitment doesn’t have to be long term. Saying you’re going to do something for a specific amount of time will actually be helpful while keeping your expectations reasonable.

Here are a few examples of commitments you can make:

  • I commit to making a vlog every week until March.
  • I commit to making twelve vlogs this year.
  • I commit to doing a daily vlog for two months to see if I can handle it.
  • I commit to publishing a video on Monday and Thursday every week for six months.

Notice with each commitment you have the opportunity give yourself a timeline, and I can’t recommend this enough.

Commitments are very beneficial to productivity, but it’s easy to get caught up in something that is part of a creative pursuit and get burnt out because you don’t evaluate yourself at any point.

Making a commitment attached to a timeline gives you the freedom to explore and make adjustments as necessary. In a sense, it gives you an “out” while also allowing you to really try something out.

After your commitment timeline is over, you must honestly evaluate how the process of vlogging has been going. Make any course corrections you need to before going forward.

Evaluation questions

When I first started vlogging, I made a daily vlog for 78 days straight. It was incredibly fun, but also fairly brutal on my time and focus.

I originally had given myself the evaluation deadline of 100 vlog episodes. It meant that I would do something for a specific period of time and then give myself that chance to evaluate it if it wasn’t working well.

Setting a timeline also gave my wife an “out” of sorts. I wanted her to be on board, because vlogging probably meant she would be in it from time to time, and I didn’t want her to feel uncomfortable. Telling her I would evaluate everything with her at the end of 100 days meant she knew it had the capacity to change and evolve.

At day 77, I was feeling really burnt out. I finally did my evaluation, and it was eye-opening.

These are the questions I asked:

  • Was this something that actually benefited my life?
  • How do I feel about the idea of another timeline double the length of the last? Is that something I get excited about or dread?
  • What needs to change going forward?

For me, daily vlogging wasn’t sustainable. It was going to burn me out, and damage the quality I wanted for my vlogs.

I needed to do something different or I needed to quit…and I didn’t want to quit.

I wasn’t excited about daily vlogging anymore. It had become a chore, and it was wearing me out. I didn’t want to quit though, so I decided I would switch to weekly vlogging.

Of course, when I did switch to weekly vlogging, I made another commitment and gave it a timeline.

You must make a commitment and give yourself a realistic timeline to evaluate. Always be checking yourself, always be evaluating, always be willing to change and adjust.

Now vlogging is simply something that I do. The commitment has molded and evolved to fit my life. I did end up hitting 100 episodes, which was my original commitment, just in a different way than I had originally anticipated.

This is my commitment now:

I commit to releasing a vlog every Sunday.

Notice that the timeline is short, the commitment is strong, and the commitment is both personal and public. If you want true accountability (and you should get it), get other people in on your commitment and have them hold you to it!

Make a commitment. If you live with people, get them on board. Get your spouse or partner in on it, because you need their support.

You’ll have an opportunity at the end of this section to share your commitment for some public accountability, but we’ll get to that in a bit.

Next let’s talk about goals, “the end goal”, and actually aiming toward something.