- Blog Post
Has anyone ever told you that you need to be accountable for yourself and your family? Simply put, accountability is taking responsibility for your decisions. It’s putting in place a plan of action to keep you on track with your goals. Having accountability to yourself and others will push you through difficult times. Let’s talk about the two main forms of accountability:
The first person you need to be accountable to is yourself. After all we’re only talking about your own self-worth. That’s right, if you don’t do what you set out to achieve it has an impact on your self-esteem. You’re silently telling yourself that you are a failure. Let’s talk about ways you can be accountable to yourself.
- The “Gotta-Do” List
It’s easy to create a “To-Do” list down with things like “clean the house” or “take out the trash.” While necessary, these types of “to-do’s” are lovely, time-sucking distractions and can be a big problem because they distract you from not getting the important things done. This happens when you’re marching through your “To-Dos,” but you’re not any closer to finding new clients, more money or working on projects you know will lead to growth in your life. Not to mention the fact that there were things that you really had to accomplish this week, but it’s Friday afternoon, and you still haven’t done them.The difference between a “To-Do” list and a “Gotta-Do” list is FOCUS. When you get into “Gotta” mode, you’re listing things that you absolutely have to get done today. I find that nothing concentrates the attention like deadline pressure.
- Take action daily. – Everyday you should be taking some sort of action towards the achievement of your current goals. This will keep you focused and on track. If you find yourself missing more than a few days you’ll need to take immediate action to rectify the problem.
- Monitor your results. – In addition to the daily review you’ll also want to monitor your results weekly and monthly. It’s important to take a high level view of your results to ensure what you’re doing daily is moving you closer to your goals. Take the time to break from your routine so you can be sure your traveling down the right path.
Accountability to Others
Holding ourselves accountable may seem like it’s enough, after all these are your goals. However, I can tell you from years of working in the very public business of TV, that this is an extremely difficult task. We can rationalize almost any excuse for not reaching our goals, but when times get tough you’re going to need to be accountable to someone other than yourself.
- Accountability to family members. – Being held accountable to your family may be easy for some and difficult for others. I’ve seen some people that don’t want to share their goals with their family for fear they will talk them out of what they want to achieve. It’s best to find a family member that will remain positive and hold you accountable at the same time.
- Accountability to friends. – Often a friend or mentor is a better choice for accountability than family members. It’s best you find someone that wants to see you succeed and can push you to do more at the same time. They’ll also need to make a time commitment to monitoring your results. Make sure you find a friend/mentor that can do both well.
- Public accountability. – Another form of accountability (especially in TV) is to announce it publicly. You can find lots of groups on the Internet that are trying to achieve something similar to yourself. Find these people and publicly declare what you are going to achieve and when it will be done. Then continue to go back to that forum and post updates. You’d be surprised how supportive strangers can be. You could also start a blog charting your progress. This has been done many times successfully with people trying to lose weight.
- Accountability to a coach. – I personally think this is the best form of accountability. Why? Because a coach has an investment in your success. They genuinely want you to succeed. The advantage of a coach is the weekly meetings that force you to go over your results for the last seven days. They’ll find lots of ways to motivate and push you to achieve your goals. Just look at all the Olympians on TV right now. Every time they finish a competition, not far away is their coach whom they confide in to see how they fared.
Each and every day of your life, there comes the point where you call it a day and wrap things up. I don’t consider my workday closed unless I’ve answered the following three questions:
- What did I do to make money today? While money should not be your sole focus in life, the first question is incredibly important, because if you aren’t making money in today’s world, you are likely struggling. If you’re behind on payments or simply want to buy some nicer stuff or take a vacation, money is of paramount importance. Do extra side jobs, get another part time job, but don’t spend your life worried about money all the time. Raise your standards. You’ll thank yourself later for all the extra hours you put in.
- What did I do to better myself today? If you’re not growing, then how are you succeeding? Life is all about growing, learning and practicing to better ourselves. Why do you think people spend tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars on a college education? Because they know they need to better themselves to get the types of jobs that will pay them what they desire. I personally have learned more from my home library that I ever got out of years of high school and college. Read, watch, experience and do something everyday that will make you better.
- How did I make someone else’s life better today? This is ultimately the question that matters the most to me. If I am not making this world a better place than for anyone but me, then how am I making a difference? Everyday make an effort to offer a smile, pay a compliment, help someone in need or even offer words of encouragement. In the ultimate game of life, this is what you’ll look back on in your elder years and be glad that you did.