It is time to talk about the issue of commitment . It happens that it is a psychological quality, which is more developed in certain people. It must be said that commitment also includes empathy and understanding of other people.

Towards a conceptualization of commitment

With determination it can be affirmed that one of the most relevant human qualities is “commitment”, which is defined as the psychological bond or the identification of people with their peers , with an organization or activity, which allows certain actions.

When the commitment is towards an entity (social organization, community, company, organization, institution, etc.), it translates into a particular psychological state linked to the way in which individuals understand their mediation with the entity, generating positive effects on the activity. that is carried out and in the sense of belonging to it.

The American businessman Shearson Lehman defined the commitment in the following terms:

“It is what transforms a promise into reality, it is the word that speaks boldly of our intentions, it is the action that speaks louder than words, it is to be done at the time when there is none, it is to fulfill the promise when the circumstances are they put adversaries, it is the material with which the character is forged to be able to change things, it is the daily triumph of integrity over skepticism . ”

We see then that commitment also implies a certain ability to achieve things, not to stop at the slightest obstacle. We can say that commitment is a way of thinking and not just keeping good intentions, but doing everything possible to achieve it.

Elements that characterize commitment with examples

Commitment has various dimensions , which manifest themselves in heterogeneous ways. In any case, in the continuous interaction between human beings we come across the following examples of commitment.

The decisive will to get involved in work

  1. The vocation and psychological attractiveness towards the profession
  2. The concern for people and their interests . This concern is called “empathy”, which will eventually be addressed.

The commitment as a human quality is the foundation of meaningful relationships. In the field of affective relationships, it is the indicator and the determining factor not only of the probability that a relationship lasts, but of the psychological identification that one has and feels towards the couple. Commitment represents the orientation and desire for the relationship to persist over time.

So important is the commitment in affective relationships that it is the element that people take to subjectively measure their level of satisfaction or not.

Commitment, from the perspective of an affective relationship , is understood as a process of social construction that involves mutual effort, according to the idea of ​​interdependence.

In this sense, volitional forces are distinguished that drive a couple relationship but also inhibit it, which would be zero commitment. In this case, there is no doubt that a relationship is the quintessential example of what a mutual commitment is.

Regarding the love-type commitment

As long as there is a reward, an attraction, the energy and will moves towards a person or towards an activity. When it is towards a couple relationship, the commitment manifests itself in the form of affection, company, support, communication , emotional security and support.

In sum, the commitment in the love sphere is something that has a good amount of details, among which we can mention the following:

  1. The conscious decision of wanting to start a life project in common with the loved one
  2. It is the representative factor of the probability that a relationship will last.

Thus, commitment is linked to stability, and this in turn to security, trust and tranquility 

In ordinary life, commitment understood as a conscious decision to form a life project in common is not enough , since what ultimately prevails is the process of coexistence expressed in protection, affection, etc.

The relational dynamics will depend on the diverse personal abilities of its members, one of them, which should be developed in partnership with the other (or others), is commitment, together with intimacy and passion.

Individual commitment: perhaps one of the most important

The commitment can be with yourself . An individual can commit to himself to carry out a task, some objectives and achieve one or more goals. This is, without a doubt, one of the most important psychological dispositions of the human being, because the responsibility falls on the individual, it is he who watches over its fulfillment.

However, the commitment also involves -at least- two parties. The commitment leads to the fulfillment of the activity or behavior committed, in case it is not fulfilled, it ceases to exist. Normally this is subject to a time of fulfillment or a lifetime, when it is mostly emotional commitments.

Commitments have a temporal notion

The commitments are regularly limited and determined in advance to know if it is possible to carry them out 

In addition, the commitments are produced by free choice , of their own free will. All commitments can be broken; However, the breaking of work and professional commitments (or of any kind), for unjustifiable reasons, is associated with negative personal traits, such as irresponsibility.

From the above we want to insist on two core features of the commitments. They are limited, if after a while the results are not obtained then the commitment is usually abandoned. Likewise, the commitment usually ceases once a goal is reached.

Likewise, a true commitment is by free choice. Otherwise, it is not a compromise but a forced situation. And when something is done in this way, then it is not a commitment, since the person does not do things by desire but by coercion. 

The notion of commitment in the workplace

In the labor field, commitment and its preservation is the primary factor of proactivity. And it is that commitment is also a quality that entails becoming aware of how relevant it is to comply with the development of the work in the time agreed for it.

The commitment raises the capacities to solve the entrusted work , because the working conditions and the goals that it implies are already known. The company that endures and subsists in crises is because there is a commitment between their management and their employees.

Commitment implies action, not just will

After the above, it can be said that commitment is an action . If commitment is a potential reality, then it is the creation of something that previously did not exist.

true commitment concerns action . A commitment without action is just a desire, intention, to manifest something without fulfilling it. In fact, one of the most annoying things among people is that someone expresses a commitment, but only verbalizes it without fulfilling it.

It is in itself a creative act . Commitment action is common and is always being performed by and between individuals. In addition, the action of commitment is always related to the future, with situations, actions or goals.

To this end, the commitment announces what will happen in the future that, without it, would not happen. The human will can change or alter what is subject to circumstances of various kinds.

For example, thanks to the commitment of a work team, led by Elon Musk , human beings will be able to reach Mars before 2050. Even though the date is conditioned by economic and technological factors, the commitment to the status quo does not cease to exist. quo .

Other aspects of commitment

Continuing with the previous example, another essential aspect of commitment is that its consequences do not end personally. The commitment to commercial space exploration by the SpaceX company together with NASA, for example, has created expectations around the world and undoubtedly has a decisive impact on the decisions of many people and how they perceive their future.

Under this dimension, commitment is a social construct and at the same time an expression of personal decisions. Therefore, it is a point of contact between external and internal factors. That is why it is so important from a psychological point of view!

Another feature of commitment is that it is a proper construct of linguistic action . It is born from social interaction, from conversation between people. It is then an action of language that makes us glimpse certain future conditions, as a possibility that, when carried out, becomes a new reality.

When the human being commits he is bringing to the present (in a virtual and imaginary dimension) the future circumstances of the commitment . The loss of trust in people is precisely due to their failure to fulfill their commitments; mistrust produces breaks in social interaction.

Commitment, affinity and empathy

In organizations, private and public , for-profit or non-profit, in any space of social and work interaction, of whatever nature, commitment, affinity and empathy are highly appreciated qualities.

Any activity carried out based on objectives and goals will tend to be achieved, optimally, if it is born from a committed, sympathetic and empathetic team. Well-harmonized work teams focus their energies and skills towards a series of objectives.

Thanks to the empathic capacity of certain individuals, interpersonal relationships become more fluid. Knowing how to place oneself in the situation of peers or dependents is a powerful tool for social and work coexistence.

And it is certainly that, as soon as there is empathy between two people, bonds of commitment are usually established. From here it comes to another important question: the commitment, often of a subjective nature. It is something that should always be taken into account.

True commitment is the product of self-will. And you rarely have commitment for what you don’t have empathy for . It must be said that commitment then is a manifestation of will, although many times people do not realize it.

Understand the other to be able to commit

In fact, the understanding of the other is based on this intellectual capacity, which is related to emotional intelligence . The decisions of the coordinators and managers in an organization, which could be misunderstood at the beginning, go through not only good communication, but also knowing how to place oneself in the perspective of the other.

In teams where leadership promotes commitment , affinity and empathy among its members, an interesting synergy is created that promotes efficiency and creativity in solving problems.

And these qualities can be seen in teams of people as diverse as theater companies, film production, or arts festivals; but also in SMEs and for-profit corporations.

It is precisely the keys to leadership : the ability to generate commitment. Which in turn is closely related to empathy. Anyway, everything discussed shows that it is a much more complex issue than it seems at first glance.

The issue of commitment capacity

The ability to compromise implies a high level of empathy. Committing in vain, knowing that it is impossible to achieve the goal set, involves little or no empathy.

As stated before, the consequences of commitment do not end personally; Its non-compliance can be, depending on its dimensions and implications, very negative for a work team , for society and even for humanity.

It would be enough to mention the commitments assumed by the national “leaders” and the subsequent frustration of the citizens when noting the failure to keep their word. Again we see here another of the keys to the accent of commitment: when a commitment is not fulfilled, and discomfort and the initially manifested empathy is broken.

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Alexa Clark specializes in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She has experience in listening and welcoming in Individual Therapy and Couples Therapy. It meets demands such as generalized anxiety, professional, love and family conflicts, stress, depression, sexual dysfunction, grief, and adolescents from 15 years of age. Over the years, She felt the need to conduct the psychotherapy sessions with subtlety since She understands that the psychologist acts as a facilitator of self-understanding and self-acceptance, valuing each person's respect, uniqueness, and acceptance.

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