I can’t commit to things I’m not committed to. 

I heard myself say this recently while giving a talk on Feeling Good Even When Totally Stressed at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee Women’s Leadership Conference.

I’d never uttered these words before but an audience member asked, “Why do I have so much trouble staying on a diet? What is the harm of quick fixes with short-term results?”

I answered: “The thing about quick fixes is that they don’t “fix” anything. The quick fix implies short term behavior so it stands to reason that we get short-term results.”

Then I said, “If we want long-term results, we have to engage in long-term behavior.”

Everybody yawned.

Ann–this is not news.

I KNOW. I KNOW it isn’t news but let’s look at why?

Maybe we optimistically engage in this short-term behavior in the hopes that we will keep it up, that this time, it will turn into a real long-term change.

So many hearts are broken with this kind of thinking. So many dreams dashed.

Think of that gorgeous boy you dated who was in a band and drank too much. He was some quick-fun wasn’t he? But, you didn’t commit, did you? (wait, if you did, message me with the details).

We break up with our quick-fix because it doesn’t work for us.

We can’t commit to it for whatever reason: it’s too hard, it doesn’t fit our life, it doesn’t ultimately make sense to us and so we wander off.

A quick-fix should be named a quick-broken.

I think we need a new term. A Commit-Fix

Commit –to pledge or engage oneself.  

Fix – to become stable or permanent

You have to commit. But, if you don’t believe in the behavior as a long-term commitment you won’t be able to do it forever.

We can’t, or don’t or won’t commit to things we are not committed to.

There you have it.

PS. Does anyone have the phone number of that quick-fun musician guy?

You know who is your best friend for balanced thinking is Annie Lamott and she talks about dieting here: How much weight are you hoping to gain?

You might also like this No And Yes Live Together In The House You Built For Yourself

or this How Do You Say No Without Feeling Guilty?