S:0253 Distinction: Commitment vs. Duty

(Distinctions are subtleties of language that, when gotten, cause a shift in a belief, behavior, value or attitude.)


You commit to things you want to do, while duty is a should.

If you are in a long-term marriage “for the sake of the children”, then it is duty that keeps you there. If you are in a long-term marriage – even through the rough times – because you want to be in a committed relationship, the energy is completely different.

Substitute “job” or “career” or “volunteer position” for the word “marriage” and the distinction is the same.

Living to a duty may be because by doing so you get your needs met. You are pushed to do your duties. When a duty is completed you feel relief.

Your commitments are based on your values. You are pulled forward by your commitments. Living your commitments gives you joy.


Copyright 2000 Steve Straus. All rights reserved.