Moses spoke to the heads of the tribes of the people of Israel, saying, “This is what the Lord has commanded. If a man vows a vow to the Lord, or swears an oath to bind himself by a pledge, he shall not break his word. He shall do according to all that proceeds out of his mouth.
In the past, we’ve talked a lot about integrity – being true not only to others, but more importantly, to yourself. How many men here, yours truly included have said you would do something and not followed through? Do not make excuses such as the task was small or trivial. Did you say “I will do this” and then not do it?
If so, and I imagine everyone here is guilty of it as some point, then you have sold yourself short. You have not been a man of your word. This may seem silly. After all, are all endeavors worthy of your time to fulfill? Probably not, no.
But that in itself is a lesson in becoming a man of honor; learning when to say yes and when to say no. A man who keeps his word, no matter how small the task, is a man of honor and integrity. A man who cannot be trusted in the small things will not be trusted to larger things.
I am reminded of a lecture from Jordan Peterson where he was asked where should someone start if their life is a complete mess and they do not know what to do. He answered simply, “Clean your room.” You may laugh, but try it first thing in the morning. Clean your room so that it is immaculate. Sweep the floor. Make your bed. Put everything where it belongs. After you are done, step back and appreciate your work. Tell me it doesn’t affect your mindset for the entire day. You will be more productive and have a better attitude simply because you got your momentum going first thing in the morning. This same approach equally applies to other tasks you have left unfinished.
So now I asked of you readers, what things have you promised, big or small, that you have not yet fulfilled? Take some time to write them down and, like Dave Ramsey’s Debt Snowball, begin knocking them out from easiest to hardest. Even if no one notices or appreciates your achievements, you will rest easier knowing that you have kept to your promises even if they were delayed.
You will know that you are a man of integrity. Lastly, do not rush through the tasks only to have the quality of your work suffer. That, again, is doing a disservice to yourself. Do it once and do it right.
“Whatever your life’s work is, do it well. A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead, and the unborn could do it no better.”
Martin Luther King Jr.