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How do you stay motivated? How do you become the person you want to be? How do you keep commitments to yourself and how can you achieve the kinds of things the people you look up to have achieved?
You want all of these things, but you can’t seem to stick with something. You want to commit, but every time you try to start something it doesn’t really go anywhere and you just give up and move on.
These people you look up to seem to be prolific in their output. They’re successful, they’re consistent, and they’re constantly putting things out without fail.
If you feel like you’ve wanted to get to this point and you just aren’t there yet, accountability is what is missing.
You’ve experienced it before. You want to be disciplined and go to the gym. You set your alarm for early, but you end up hitting snooze and not waking up in time to go. You get on with your day, feeling a little bit bad about yourself, but then tomorrow you do the same thing all over again.
Compare this to the times where you got yourself a gym buddy. You knew your friend was waiting for you to pick them up. Or you knew they were going to be by at 6:30am to pick you up and take you to the gym. Did you skip out? No, you got up because someone was counting on you. You didn’t want to disappoint them. That’s the thing:
We don’t want to disappoint other people, but we don’t mind disappointing ourselves.
You have to leverage what you care about. If you don’t care about disappointing yourself, then leverage the fact that you care about what other people think of you. That’s where accountability comes in. I like to call it the 3 P’s of Accountability:
- Public Accountability
- Partner Accountability
- Personal Accountability
It’s not any one of those individually that will hold you but the combination of all three.
First, you make a public commitment to doing something. You put yourself out there, tell people you’re going to do something and stake your reputation on it.
Now, if you don’t do it, your reputation takes a hit. Your word now means less if you don’t follow through.
But we don’t stop there.
Next is partner accountability. The primary reason you should have an accountability partner is because we’re not afraid to let ourselves down. For many people, if we break a commitment to ourselves, it’s not a big deal. No one else knows, so it doesn’t carry much weight to us. This is why when we resolve to wake up early, when we often hit the snooze button and sleep in. Waking up early just never happens.
For whatever reason, we tend to put more stock in the thoughts and opinions of others. Meeting with someone regularly is a great way to keep ourselves on track.
The last one is personal accountability. This may seem weird at first because I just got done saying we don’t put much stock in our own personal commitments. That’s true, we don’t. But that’s exactly why we’re bringing it in here.
We’re including the personal accountability—that’s making a promise to yourself—because it’s piggybacking off of the other two forms. You’re essentially strengthening the personal accountability as a result.
Public and partner accountability will keep you committed.
When you fulfill those commitments, you also fulfill the commitment to yourself by proxy.
This gives your own word more weight so that in the future it will eventually become a formidable form of accountability.
This brings you a step closer to being able to be self disciplined such that you can accomplish something on your own without an accountability partner if you want to because your own word will actually mean something to you.
Next: How to Find an Accountability Partner
Naturally, this brings up the question: How do I find an accountability partner? I actually have a lot that I want to go into on this and am saving it for tomorrow’s episode. Subscribe if you haven’t already and I’ll talk to you tomorrow.