The word promise comes from the Latin promittere, meaning "to send forward." When you make a promise, you send forth your honest intentions to manifest into reality. In this way, we commit to others on a daily basis; we promise to be on time, take out the trash, and love our spouse 'til death do us part. Some promises are kept valiantly while others are broken remorselessly. Still, our word remains the almighty root of trust.
But if a promise is indicative of our dignity, what about the promises you make to yourself? Do you really respect your personal pledges? Better yet, what have you sworn to yourself today that will serve you tomorrow?
Take a moment to make yourself the following 10 promises -- virtuous vows that will strengthen your willpower and reaffirm your future potential:
I promise to honour my true worth. Between the demands of daily life and taking care of others, we can easily forget our true worth. But in fact we merit more than we know. We deserve to be blessed with prosperity, good fortune and great health, and the moment we acknowledge this as our birthright is the moment we begin to attract the abundance to which we are truly entitled.
I promise to make clear my intentions. Intentions are the bridge linking conscious thought to bona fide action. Think of 10 important things you need to accomplish soon, and list your intentions in a clear, concise way, emphasizing the method of action you will adopt to bring your objectives to life.
I promise to educate myself as much as possible. Education does not necessarily entail school or books, but it does imply learning -- about different beliefs, the past, world events, and future concepts. There is a profound magic in learning and knowing that is seldom present in other activities. That's because learning instantly empowers us. And all you must do to learn is watch the world with vigilance. Knowledge endows us with an understanding and acceptance of the world as it was, is, and will be. As the Roman poet Virgil said, "Happy is he who has been able to learn the causes of things."
I promise to show more compassion to the world around me. We each possess compassion, an often neglected grace. But because it's easier to be aggressive than kind, we resort to the former in response to everyday matters. Full resolution to our problems is only possible through empathy and patience. Whether it's letting a car enter into your lane or recycling to save our environment, compassion takes many forms. Remember always to extend compassion to yourself as well.
I promise to stand up for myself. Certain situations in life will reek of unfairness. Stand up for yourself in a polite but firm way. Defending your rights demands respect from others. Don't be afraid to voice your opinions and make others understand that you seek justice for yourself. After all, if you don't stand up for yourself, who will?
I promise to finish what I started. Leaving a goal halfway finished means you'll never know what could've happened if you would've completed it. As difficult as it may be, there is no greater compensation than getting something done through genuine effort and ambition. Practice discipline to meet the finish line of your aspirations.
I promise to evolve. Evolution is the law of the universe and what does not evolve dies out. We, too, must shift and change, little by little, day by day. Promise yourself to strive for betterment. It can be as simple as taking up an exercise routine or ending a long-standing, negative habit. Through careful reflection and honest introspection, you will realize exactly what areas of your self need to be cultivated to spur personal progress.
I promise to end patterns. Patterns of detrimental behaviour keep us stagnant and stuck in the same recurring cycles. Often we can become trapped in one phase of life without even knowing it. From a bad relationship or series of similar relationships to a dead-end job or the wrong career choices, all patterns can be broken by acknowledging our faulty actions and steering our future in a different direction. To end the repetition of negative events, we must understand what needs to be changed and modify our actions to yield different results.
I promise not to allow others to affect me. Realizing that your happiness is in your hands is the only key to unwavering joy. When someone tries to jeopardize your mood, go within yourself and re-stabilize your emotions. Affirm to yourself that no one is allowed to harm you. Say, "I am the keeper of my joy, which is whole, unhurt, and intact."
I promise to take nothing for granted. We've all heard the phrase, You don't know what you've got until it's gone, but not until we lose something special do these words really hit home. This is because the greatest sadness lies in remembrance. Once we can no longer have something, we begin to think, Why didn't I enjoy it when I had the chance? Immerse yourself in the tender moments you are given each day. Let a tight embrace, a family moment, or a long kiss add to your treasure chest of cherished memories. As tiny or fleeting as they may be, they are yours.
Promises are our word of honour that something will come true in a certain way. Before you make another promise to anyone else, commit to yourself the empowering ideals above. These oaths will fortify your strength and solidify your self worth.
My promises to you,
Dr. Carmen Harra