I don’t know about you, but the word ‘accountability’ has always had a negative ring to me. Dictionary.com describes the word accountable this way: “subject to the obligation to report, explain, or justify something; responsible; answerable.” Doesn’t sound like much fun does it? Sounds very weighty and uncomfortable.
But I’m discovering, for me, it’s the key to making progress with my goals. Every article I read on achieving success in any endeavor includes a comment or two about finding someone to hold you accountable or someone who you can report your progress to. I have a group of wonderful friends that endure my wild ideas, don’t try to talk me about of them, are incredibly gracious when said wild ideas don’t happen and cheer me on when I do finish something. It’s a great feeling to have someone ask, “so how’s ‘xyz’ going?” or “where are you with your plan to do ‘xyz’?” and know they genuinely are interested.
I think sometimes I don’t want to be held accountable because I want an escape hatch built in to my plans because they’re a bit outlandish or I’m not completely serious about finishing them. If I quit a project and haven’t told anyone then I don’t have to feel the inevitable remorse that comes with letting someone else down. But having an escape hatch makes it far too easy to, well, escape. And I don’t want to be let off that easy with the commitments that I’ve been writing about. I know there will be struggles, setbacks and adjustments, but that’s what an accountability partner is for. Along with asking the “so how are you doing with ‘xyz’ questions”, they’re also great sources of wisdom because they know you. They can help guide you, setup you up for success, cheer with you when you do success and always be there to pick you back up when you fall short.
I highly recommend finding one or two people who you trust to speak into your life and ask them to help you with your dreams. It doesn’t have to be anything formal and it certainly doesn’t have to be a drag. And make yourself available to your friends and be someone who is worthy of being trusted with their dreams.
“Woody’s my accountability partner… well it’s more like he gives an ‘account’ to mom every time I do something ‘not on’. That’s what mom calls my inappropriate activities – ‘not on’. And before you think he goes around wearing a halo, ask him about all the venetian blinds and couch cushions he’s destroyed.”