According to Brian Tracy, “Self-discipline is the ability to do what needs to be done, when it is due, whether you want to or not.”
Having adopted this as a personal mantra, I find it’s a powerful message to kick me in the pants from time to time. But I also realise that there’s one little ingredient missing: Accountability.
You see, without it, it’s easy to slip into victim mode, spouting blame and excuses. With it, the ‘I will not tarnish my superhero suit’ ego-like games we play with ourselves become that much more credible. Strange as it is, while I might be okay with letting myself down, there is no flipping way I want to disappoint you. Go figure!
Here’s what works for me:
Besides the usual non-contracted accountability of team (think: monthly meeting or Monday check in), family and friends, I have contracted up front with three different accountability buddies/groups. They are all there for different types of challenges, but they are all equally meaningful. I feel totally safe with all of them, am never judged and have the opportunity to be vulnerable. This is important.
Which buddy I call on depends on which goal/task/project I am faced with… I have the following options:
1. High level team thinking and ‘Exco-like’ challenge buddies:
- Why: This group challenges me as an entrepreneur and keeps me accountable as a business woman. I’m forced to look at the big picture within a specific time frame.
- Who: Two business owners and myself. I met the one at a networking event eight years ago and she became my client two years ago when I helped her with time management skills and work/life juggle while she was writing her dissertation. She introduced me to her business coach which makes us a group of three.
- What: It’s easy to busy myself with business where I tend to find creative alternatives for not setting and assessing things like KPIs, SWOT, strategy and budgets.
- When: Every six weeks we meet for a half day session.
- Where: On rotation at each one of our homes so we aren’t uninterrupted or distracted by the office craziness.
2. Shift my comfort zones and challenge my growth accountability buddy:
- Why: Growth comes from shifting outside of what is comfortable.
- Who: One dynamic individual almost half my age!
- What: Anything relating to technology and running a business in today’s world. She challenges me on what isn’t working optimally and gets me questioning what is working but could be even better. This buddy is there to shift me from ever becoming complacent and that is critical for any business owner.
- When: Ad hoc.
- Where: Skype call.
3. No excuse challenge buddies:
- Why: When I’m working on a scary goal and need a shove.
- Who: Anyone within the Get Organised team that is needing accountability on achieving a goal of their own (business or personal). Anything between one to four buddies will do for this type of accountability.
- What: Based on my own challenge I set and verbalise my required action for that period to the buddy who holds me accountable. Sometimes we call on each other for extra inspiration, idea sharing or firm pushing. This type of accountability is based on the ethos ‘do something every day towards reaching your goals’. It’s very powerful.
- When: Weekly
- Where: Skype call.
What type of accountability do you rely on? Please share in the comments.
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