A commitment device is something that makes the effects of our work real and visible for all to see, even in the early stages of production. Commitment devices elevate the elegance of our project, building confidence and solidifying engagement, both from ourselves and others. And the best part is, they don’t have to be physical things. Registering a domain or buying a new binder is useful, but sometimes the simple act of thoughtfulness and vision is enough to help us experience our idea as reality. To quote the great Dave Matthews, "Take what you can from your dreams, make them as real as anything."
COMMENCEMENT DEVICE — Intentionally enshrine the first iteration of your project, framing it with layers of thoughtfulness and professionalism
Our goal as creators is to respect our ideas enough to treat them like we’ve been doing it forever. Like they’re already a living thing that works and matters. Something that you don’t need to explain to anyone. Whatever dream you’re trying to realize, don’t just think with the end in mind, but inhabit energy of that reality in your body.
My product development and innovation gameshow lived inside my head for about three years before it went public. Which was a much longer incubation cycle than most of my projects typically run, but for good reason. Because in this particular case, there was no hurry. Rushing to produce the show out of some ego driven need for speed wouldn’t have been useful. Quality would have suffered. But by taking my time in the preproduction stage, letting the idea blossom incrementally, my vision was gradually seated and saturated into my consciousness. By making it as real in my mind as I could, as early as I could, the idea was ready to come out of the gate fully formed. It certainly wasn’t perfect, but it was deeply methodical. And when it came time to launch, it unfolded as a matter of course. After hearing the first episode, my friend even told me. You make it sound like you’ve been doing this thing for years. Damn right.
Find a commitment device that helps you act as if you’re already there and that it’s already happened. Intentionally enshrine your project, framing it with layers of thoughtfulness and professionalism. And trust that when you make it real, you make it move. How will you come out of the gate fully formed?
Elevate the elegance of your project
Experience your idea as a reality sooner
Execute inspiring version one of your project
Build confidence and engagement for yourself and others