No human being is immune to adversity, rejection, or setbacks. Every person will experience, at some time or another, strenuous times.
So what is it about successful people that gets them through these inevitable low periods of motivation and hope?
Persistence can be defined as continuing firmly or obstinately in a course of action in spite of difficulty or opposition. (1)
Persistence is the secret sauce of all meaningful pursuits. And what if we could drastically improve our ability to be more persistent? What if we could make the journey towards our goals a little less rocky?
We can. We can enlist the help of one another via the mechanism of accountability. Accountability is “the condition of having to answer, explain, or justify one's actions or beliefs to another” (2) and it acts as a buffer to our unavoidable fluctuations in motivation and willpower.
Why is accountability so important?
Well for one, it is a tool we can use to assist us in forming new habits. This is often required in the pursuit of new goals. We must learn along the way if we want to succeed. We will also experience situations we have never encountered before. Therefore, we need to adjust our habits of thinking and behaving accordingly.
“Accountability is a powerful factor in habit formation, and a ubiquitous feature in our lives. If we believe that someone’s watching, we behave differently.” — Gretchen Rubin
Not only do we alter our behavior when someone is watching us, we also make different individual decisions.
“Increased accountability will alter decision-making strategies. When expecting evaluation from an audience, people will think more carefully about their decisions than they normally would.“ — Seth Gidder, E.J. Masicampo, Encyclopedia of Social Psychology Vol. 1
At times throughout our journey, we will feel like giving up. That is to be expected. Yet, being accountable to another person helps us stay on track. It helps us remember the “why” of what we are doing and it greatly reduces the likelihood of us just throwing in the towel when times get rough.
By acquiring an accountability partner, we can leverage the power of social influence to our advantage, instead of always feeling like a victim to things such as groupthink or feeling the pain and fear of social rejection.
Call to action: Get an accountability partner!
Don't wait until tomorrow. Do it right now. Email, call, do whatever you have to do to propose an accountability partnership with another person.
You can find a trusted friend or colleague, the most important part here is that the person will hold you accountable and vice versa. You both have to be committed to achieving certain goals in your life and be willing to take on more of a “tough love” role with one another to ensure you both actually do what you both commit to doing over an agreed upon time.
You may want to start with regular, brief weekly check-ins where you share what you accomplished that week and what you are committed to achieving before the next check-in.
Don't know where to start with finding an accountability partner? Join Compass
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Through them, you will have access to not only our fabulous resources, but you will have instant access to a community of over 44,000 beautiful souls who are just as dedicated to change, achievement, and living an inspired life as you are.
You are bound to find someone there who is not only willing to be an accountability partner with you, but that will be a great fit.