Earlier this year I posted about my New Year’s commitments. I was very specific in saying these are NOT resolutions. These are vital behaviors that I must do DAILY in order to live the life that I want. A resolution is a decision to do something, but a commitment is being dedicated to a cause. Language wise, that sounds like a small difference. But in practice, that difference is gigantic.
So today I want to follow-up on this distinction between resolutions and commitments and talk about accountability. The featured image for this post is the commitments that have been made in my house for 2017 (I was asked to only post my own, so I have honored that). My boyfriend and I are on individual journeys, but the habits we are hoping to build are very similar. Because we have very different backgrounds, we cannot possibly have the same mindset driving us towards these commitments. However, we do have each other as accountability partners and we have enough in common that we can easily fold this accountability into our daily lives as well.
This brings me to an excellent point on accountability. In the past, I had always considered myself a self-motivated individual. More recently, I have realized that is not quite true. I am definitely very self-motivated when it comes to doing a good job on things others will see. Being self-motivating for my own personal gains? Nil. Therefore, I determined there were areas in my life that I need an accountability partner. I needed an accountability partner for writing so that I wasn’t trying to do too much in one day and getting too burnt out to do anything else because I had a deadline. I needed accountability to get up from my desk and actually go talk to another human instead of emailing them a one-line email. These examples seem so miniscule, but they took a LOT of work on my part.
How do you find an accountability partner? In some cases they will just fall into your lap. For example, this morning I came up with the idea for this post in the shower. 15 minutes later my boyfriend came to me saying that he had “a list of things I have to do every day.” DING DING DING! Hello opportunity. In other cases, you will have to seek them out. Writing: I texted a friend and said, “I’m not writing, and I know you need to be writing too, so let’s do a daily check-in with each other.” Pursuit. Either of these options work- as long as you have the right person.
How do you know if it’s the right person? Meh, trial and error. Hopefully, there is evidence there that the person you choose is the right person, but that will not always be true. The question that I think is the key, at the core of this being successful, is finding a person who can tell ask you, “Will this matter in five years? One year? Next month? Tomorrow? Today?” Most often we go from, “I always have tomorrow,” and then tomorrow turns into five years. But if we start by looking at what TIME will bring us, understanding what we do today matters. Not letting ourselves wait until tomorrow unless there is a legitimate reason is all we need. It doesn’t matter where that comes from, as long as you figure out how to find it.
Bonus content: I pulled the title for this post from a list of inspirational songs chosen by entrepreneurs. Although I had a lot of trouble coming up with a title originally (hence Google), after reading this list I found it almost impossible to choose one! I eventually went with number 1 because that song has gotten me through A LOT. So much, that I cannot even remember everything.