When you are trying to do something difficult, it’s really helpful to have the support of loving family and friends. During a challenge, there will be times when you succeed, and times when you fail, and both of those temporary outcomes are part of the process. Your supporters help by cheering for you when you succeed and for encouraging you to keep going when you fail.
Now, what about those times when you’re just sorta starting to go down the path of failure, but you don’t even know it yet? That’s where an accountability supporter comes in. An accountability supporter is someone who cares about you, someone who supports your goals, someone who cheers when you succeed, and encourages you when you stumble, but they also have the courage to tell you tenderly when you’re starting to walk down the wrong path.
An accountability buddy says, “Hey, I don’t think we need dessert,” when you start to order ice cream when you’re trying to diet. The accountability buddy reminds you that you said you were going to save half your disposable income when your tax refund comes in and you begin plotting to blow it all on a big screen T.V. The accountability buddy does just that, keeps you accountable. They need to be someone you feel very safe with and they need to be someone who truly cares about you and has integrity.
Last night I did a seminar at Get Psyched! the store and a number of people made themselves accountable to me to take the first step towards some outrageous goals they set for themselves. They pledged to e-mail me when they completed the first step towards their goal. I can predict that the ones that take the time to do that will be much closer to reaching their goals than the ones who write it off as a frivilous exercise.
Try it with a buddy. Make a promise to each other to do one thing to improve your situation, then check back in with each other in a week and report on the first step that you took. Then make another committment to each other. Watch how far you’ll get!