In 2001-2002, I had the good fortune of being a part of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Strength and Conditioning Staff.
Our Head Coach was Pro Football Hall of Famer Tony Dungy, and it turned out to be his last season with the team (and consequently, ours too).
Coach Dungy had a pretty unique perspective on excuses. Have you ever heard the saying “there’s no such thing as a good excuse”? Well, Coach Dungy believed just the opposite. In a letter that went out to the entire staff and all the players, he told us his philosophy on excuses: that in fact, most excuses were good ones. And since that was the case, and since it was really hard to tell the good ones from the bad ones, he informed us that – “none will be accepted”.
And he meant it! No sick days. No tardiness. No not getting your job done for any reason.
In fact, he felt so strongly about it, there was a big sign in the locker room addressing the issue:
Set expectations, Commit to them, and execute. No excuses, no explanations.
So once you make a decision on your expectations (in our case, winning the Super Bowl), you have to commit to the execution, day in and day out, of what it takes to get there – without excuses or explanations.
Once you make a committed decision, something special happens to you. You will find an inner drive taking hold of you, propelling you in the direction of your desired value.
For example, if you want to get in shape, the first thing you need to do is decide you are going to get in shape, and then commit to that decision. Many people at gyms in Dunedin, Palm Harbor and Clearwater set a goal of getting in shape, often in the form of a New Year’s resolution. However, very few of these people actually see their goal through and achieve the desired result; perhaps you have been one of them. The reason is they have not turned their goal into a commitment.
So how do you turn a goal into a commitment?
You turn a goal into a commitment by stating your goal, then adding the words “no matter what”. For example:
“I will work out 2 times a week at Rock Solid Fitness for the next 3 months, no matter what.”
Or, “I will not eat dessert with dinner this month, no matter what“.
Adding the words “no matter what” to a goal transforms a mere desire into a committed decision, thereby increasing the chances of reaching the goal to practically inevitable. This is the power of commitment.
Take a moment now to reflect on why you want to get in shape. What do you think being in shape will do for you? How will it improve the quality of your life? And why is it important to you?
Answering these questions will help you successfully make your way through the myriad of distractions we all deal with in day-to-day life and get your workouts done.