How to See Accountability as More Than a "Four-Letter" Word

Be honest: Do you often shrink at the thought of being held accountable? Accountability for some people is the ultimate four-letter word. Yes, I know there are more than four letter in accountability. I can count. But seriously, there was a time where “accountability” was like a cuss word to me.

Like so many entrepreneurs, creatives, students, writers, and the self employed, I used to find the idea of accountability to be confining, threatening, and to be honest, kind of intrusive. It probably has something to with my not liking to be told what to do and when to do it. (That’s why we are self-employed, right?!)

Today is a different story. Today, I’m kind of an accountability junkie. I have a coach, I’m looking into hiring another, and I usually have at least two other accountability partners at any given time. Sometimes I even like to enlist accountability partners for short term projects and other separate goals.     

The definition of accountability is “the obligation or willingness to accept responsibility.” Well, almost all of us are obligated to be accountable at some point in our lives, whether at our job, with a monetary debt, or just the general laws of the land. The big difference is when you CHOOSE to hold yourself accountable even when you don’t have to. The small percentage of people that say, “Hey, I want you to hold me to my word.” That’s where the line in the sand is drawn and where we jump into success.

Change your mind.

Instead of looking at accountability as answering to someone else for your time and efforts, try switching your perspective and looking at it as another tool for your success. When I started looking at accountability as someone cheering me on (even if they weren’t), I would actually get excited to report back with my results.

Choose the right accountability partner.

A great accountability partner, coach, or boss is not going to do your work for you or give you all the answers. The right person is going to be there to ask the right questions, remind you of your goal(s), and WHY you are doing what you are doing.

Stop being a victim.

When you are acutely aware that you can control your destiny and how you attain your dreams, you will let go of that “Poor me. Everyone is against me” type of thinking. You will stop waiting for things to happen for you or to you. When you walk into that empowered attitude, you will become so flippin’ thankful that someone checks in to ask if you got that one thing done on time, if you worked out, or how you plan to reach your next goal.

Help others be accountable.

Anytime you help others, it comes back to you and you learn more about yourself. That’s just the law of reciprocity. So when you choose to hold others accountable by understanding their goals and encouraging them to meet their obligations, you become more accountable to yourself and it pushes you to complete your own goals and tasks. See how that works? It’s the one time it’s okay to push people and hope that they push you back.

Seriously...Grab a hold of some good ol’ fashioned accountability. Hold yourself to higher standards, and let’s just see how you get things movin’.


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