On Commitment

Photo of the Tibetan side of Mt Everest, with two smaller peaks in the foreground. Much snow and ice on the peaks and a trail of spindrift blowing off one them. Deep blue sky backing it all.

“There is a difference between interest and commitment. When you’re interested in something, you do it only when it’s convenient. When you’re committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results.”

Kenneth H. Blanchard, Leadership Author

Mountaineer W.H. Murray summed up the importance of commitment in his account of the 1950 Scottish Himalayan Expedition, in The Story of Everest.*

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back.
Always ineffectiveness.
Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation) there is one elementary truth,

the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans:
that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too.
All sorts of things occur that would never otherwise have occurred.
A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meeting and material assignee which no [person] could have dreamt would come their way.
I have learned a deep respect for on of Goethe’s couplets —
“Whatever you can do or dream you, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”

*This passage is often posted as The Commitment Poem, and wrongly attributed to Goethe

Check out expert and reader praise for my free ebook
THRIVE! Create What Matters Most — In Challenging Times and Beyond


Sharon Wood, the first person to call me “Coach,” committed to becoming the first North American woman to summit Mount Everest—and by a new route on the Tibetan side.

Sharon On Everest Summit

Then she committed to creating the kind an quality of life she truly wanted.

“Bruce’s coaching helped me navigate 25 years of a life I dared long for. His voice, insight and wisdom are part of the inner everyday language I used to climb Mount Everest, raise kids, pioneer a school, deliver over a thousand presentations, and take on courageous adventures.”

Sharon Wood, Climber, Guide, Mother, Motivational Speaker


Most people don’t fail because they lack will, motivation or resources.

They fail because they lack an organizing framework to energize and guide their actions—even when interest flags or motivation fails.

My results-focused Life Design Framework can energize you, help you make good choices —and commit to following through on them to success. And then do it well!

“I was afraid to commit. I dabbled, but never jumped in fully—fearing I’d miss other opportunities. Coaching helped me change. As I acted on my choices, my competence and confidence grew. I got clearer about what I wanted. I set up a landscaping business. I married my sweetie of many years. And I’m gonna be a Dad. Never been happier. Oh, yeah, I got a boat!

S.R. Kaleff, Vancouver, BC
Sail boat with sails up, silhouetted  against an orangey-gold strip of sunshine reflected off bands of dark-grey purplish clouds. Evokes a feeling of "heading out."
Heading Out
Bruce Elkin

Life Design Coach. Personal Life Coach. 25 years experience. Clients on 6 continents. Author of 5 books and ebooks. Cares about the Earth and living in harmony with its natural systems.