If you do not say “I promise” is it a promise?

One way of earning the reputation for dependability is by keeping our promises. Last night as we talked about this in class with our students. I asked them if you had to say “I promise” as a part of our sentence to make it a real promise to mom and dad.Many of them said yes, it was not a promise unless you said the words, “I promise.”  However when asked if their parents said to them, “We are taking you to Disney World for your birthday!” they thought for sure that was a promise that should be kept.

Dependability happens when others know we will do what  we say we are going to do – with or without the words “I promise.” We make many different commitments, promises, that others depend on us completing. It may be our chores at home, cleaning up a mess, homework, or getting ourselves up in the morning. As parents we commit to our children on many levels and they are depending on us to keep those commitments.

When we keep our promises to our children we are modeling for them a behavior we know is important for them to display. When we keep our commitments, our friends know they can rely on us, and we may be given greater privileges in the future. Dependability is important for us as teachers, parents, and students, building trust with those in our life.

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