Who is your accountability partner?


Recently I sat down with David Yates – my business partner on JFDI / 100 Days – for a “10-Day Sprint” meeting. A “10-Day Sprint” is the process we have created for eating OUR elephant (launching the full 100 Days platform) where each 10-day sprint is one bite of that elephant. What follows is a brief snippet of our conversation that day:

David: So – how are you feeling about where we are?

Me: I feel really good about what I’m focused on at the moment. If feels really nice to be making such good progress – and it still doesn’t feel like work!

David: I’m realizing that today is the end of our 3rd 10-Day Sprint! I’m just amazed at how fast these sprint meetings come around!

Me: I know, eh? I feel the same way – those 10 days go by really fast. So far, I feel like I’m keeping up, though.

David: Me too. But I definitely believe that I’ve made much better progress with my part of the activities by having YOU to be accountable to than I would have if I were doing all of this on my own.

Me: I totally agree! Having someone else relying on me to get my stuff done is KEY to keeping me on track.

I wanted to share this short exchange to highlight a key realization that we both came to during that conversation and that was the crucial importance of having an accountability partner when you’re working your way through achieving a goal or changing a habit. As a matter of fact, the American Society of Training and Development noted that simply committing to someone else that you will accomplish a goal makes you 65% more likely to do so! AND (this one will blow your socks off), having a specific accountability appointment(s) with the person you’ve made the commitment to makes you 95% more likely to achieve your goal! WOW!

What the heck is an ‘accountability partner’ and how do I find one ASAP, you ask? It’s simply a person you trust who isn’t afraid to tell it to you like it is and would be happy to fulfill the role of being there for you to check in and ensure you’re staying on track with what you need to do. This person can listen to you when you’re frustrated and help support you when you find your motivation slipping. We so often lack the objectivity to see beyond our current frustrations and re-focus on the big picture – and this is where an outside person can really help us regain our ‘mojo’!

Your accountability partner might even have the same goal as you, and then you may enjoy a bit of friendly competition while you work toward reaching your goals together. Maybe this person is someone who has ‘been there done that’ and can be a guide or mentor to you. Whomever you choose, whether it is a person or a group of people, be sure they’re willing to be honest with you and that you’ve shared your goal in enough detail that they can truly help you through the difficult bits and keep you on track.

A friend, an online group, a ‘live’ group or even choosing to pay a coach or mentor to hold you accountable – the choice is yours! You’ll be amazed at how much you accomplish in a short amount of time with a great accountability partner in place.

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