About 20 months ago, just before the pandemic started, I decided to do daily exercise. After (probably ) 10th unsuccessful experience, I felt I had to do something differently. I did one thing differently and it worked!!
What was the key for success?
I had an accountability partner.
When you try to look for a definition of “accountability partner” in dictionary, you might not find it. It’s probably a new word for dictionary world, but it has been around and used for many years. Based on Wikipedia, Accountability Partner is:
An accountability partner is a person who coaches another person in terms of helping the other person keep a commitment. The term is a neologism and has gained relatively wide use since the 1990s. The term is often used by Christians where the accountability partner helps a person adhere to a moral commitment, such as refraining from viewing a pornographic internet site. It was originally used in connection with weight loss programs in the 1960s.
By 2016 a partner can help with multiple types of physical fitness, starting or improving a business, a business or personal project, or other purpose involving a goal.
Not having an accountable partner to help a person accomplish their goal is one reason 92% of people did not accomplish their New Year's resolution according to a University of Scranton study by Dan Diamond in Forbes and an article by Dale Tyson.
Often Accountability Partners exchange commitments to help one another follow through.
I feel the key word here is “keep a commitment”.
When you promise yourself to do exercise everyday, to sleep 8 hours per day, or to choose healthy foods, how easy or challenging are they for you? If you decide to spend 30 minutes a day for your own development, to listen to your direct reports before opening your mouth, or to be assertive when needed, how often are you successful with those decisions?
In my own experience, talking to someone about my promise increases the chances that it will be fulfilled. In addition, it will be even more effective if the person checks the progress from time to time.
The next question is how to find a wonderful accountability partner. Your family member or a good friend can be a perfect candidate. If you form a accountability group, it would work well as well. But my option for success is to find your own coach. Not only can your coach be a great accountability partner, but they can also help you ensure success by asking you the right questions when things go wrong as you want. Coaches can also be a cheerleaders for your success.
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