Each and every day, we all make promises. We make these promises in many different ways, and in a variety of forms. A promise can be as simple as "I'll call you back", or as committing as "I promise to get that done!"

Often we can make promises and commitments without thinking through the time, effort and resources necessary to complete them. When that happens, someone feels like they got the short end of the deal! Sometimes that person is your self! More often it means someone else has been let down.

I believe that we all make promises that we are unable to keep for whatever reason - it just happens. Maybe we have too much going on and we really wanted to do what we committed to but simply could not get it done. Personally, because one of my top four values is integrity, when I make a promise or commitment and am unable to keep it, this can be painful. Many times my inability to perform an obligation or commitment affects me more than the person I made the promise to in the first place!

I have learned to recognize when I am unable to meet a deadline, or a commitment, or to fulfill a promise and to take an additional crucial step. This step is simple, yet powerful. It allows me to maintain my integrity, and removes any feelings of guilt or worry I used to carry due to perceived lack of integrity on my part.

This simple step is forgiveness. I ask forgiveness of my Self or the person to whom I am unable to fulfill a commitment to. We are not always able to do what we say we are going to do. For whatever reason, we cannot always send a payment as we promised, or finish a report that we committed to, or complete a project by the date we said we would.

However, we can, and should notify the party to whom we have committed and ask forgiveness. We then set up a payment plan, redefine the report due date or reset the project due date.

This simple but powerful step which should be taken as soon as you see yourself unable to meet your commitments. It can make your life so much better by removing most of the worry and guilt feelings that normally accompany this loss of integrity. As soon as you recognize this situation, act immediately! Immediate action not only helps you, but also communicates to the other party that you recognize and honor their basic right to know what is going on. They will respect you more for it.

And here is the way to solve the problem so it never happens again. Recognize what you can and cannot do. Consistently under-promise and over-deliver on all your commitments!

Author's Bio: 

Miami Phillips is an ANSIR Certified Personal Coach and the founder of Creative MasterMinds. Miami believes personal growth is an essential ingredient to being happy and contributing to this world. Through his coaching, ebooks and teleclasses he provides a path for motivated people to find passion and balance in their lives by understanding their life purpose and the power of personal growth.