Here’s the scenario: It’s February, and already all of your fabulous fitness intentions have fallen by the wayside. Why is it that you started with such motivation, inspired by friends and social media influencers alike that this time ‘you can do it’, but one month in the healthy food and exercise endorphin thrill has swiftly turned into Netflix and chill?!
Well I have a reason why maybe you haven’t quite stuck to your initial resolutions, and I have a plan to help you change all that! It’s time to up your accountability.
What is accountability?
Here’s the Oxford English Dictionary definition: the fact of being responsible for your decisions or actions. Ahhh, good old responsibility. But we know this. We all know we are responsible for our actions. But sometimes, that’s just not enough. To truly be accountable, sometimes we need to be able to explain and justify those actions to another, and this is where real accountability comes in to play.
I first learned about human tendencies when being lectured by Gretchen Rubin. She is the proponent of The Four Tendencies: Upholders, Questioners, Obligers, and Rebels. These all help you decipher why you behave in certain ways, and once you understand this, you may well learn how you can stick to your goal plan, and achieve what you desire. I’m not going to delve into the details of these tendencies now (read her amazing book!), but if you, like many people, are an upholder, then you are more likely to stick to a plan if you have someone to answer to. And when they come asking how you’re getting on, you revel in the fact that you get to show them how good you are doing. Say a big warm welcome to your accountability partner!
How can I become more accountable?
I said it above, keywords: accountability partner. Just having that someone who will check in with you, ask how you’re getting on, and remind you of your priorities can have a profound affect. We all like a bit of praise every now and again, and by sharing our goals, plans of actions and intentions on a week by week/month by month basis, we have tangible markers to set us on the path to success. (And to tell us well done when we achieve them!).
How can I get an accountability partner?
Accountability partners come in many forms – if your goal is to workout 3 times a week, maybe you need to find a gym buddy that always goes with you. In a bid to never let them down, you’ll find your attendance rate goes through the roof. I often find training clients in pairs or small groups sees their consistency levels increase.
Perhaps it’s just a friend who you agree to have a call with every fortnight, so you can discuss what’s been a success and what you haven’t managed to do, and see what you might need to change going forward. You can act as an accountability partner for each other, so you’re both gaining from the relationship.
Accountability on a bigger scale
Sometimes, accountability can work in a group format. You don’t necessarily need to see each other, or even speak on the phone to hold each other accountable. I run an online group, The Make It Happen Club, with Janey Holliday, where we all hold each other accountable. You can post what your intentions are for the week, and throughout the week we all check in with each other to see how it’s going. Just having that extra level of support, guidance, advice and more helps people achieve more than they thought possible.
Want to check out The MIH Club for yourself? You can take a listen to the kind of information we share on the club FOR FREE here, to see if it might be the kind of club you want to join to start achieving your goals!
So there you have it. You are not a failure. There’s still plenty of time to achieve everything you set out to do. We can all achieve a lot over the course of a year, and if you want to make this year the best year yet, then you will be doing yourself a favour if you start you make yourself accountable for what you want to do. It may be a little scary voicing your action plan to someone else, but that’s mainly because it means you’re actually going to have TO DO IT! And at the end of the day, that’s way better than keeping it to yourself, and then letting it drop down to a never achieved dream. So here’s to accountability, productivity, and reignited motivation!