How accountability helps you reach your goals
Accountability is the sense of responsibility that you feel when someone in depending on you. If you’re a parent or if you’ve had a pet, you’ll know that you are accountable for keeping them alive, and hopefully really healthy. Or perhaps you’re accountable for making sure that the bills are paid so that your house has electricity and that there is food to feed your loved ones.
Whatever the situation is, you are accountable which means that you do it.
Can you imagine having the same sense of accountability around your own health or weight loss goals? Imagine for moment that the life of someone you love dearly depends on you taking the very best care of yourself and unless you do, their life will suffer. What would you do differently? What would you stop or start doing?
Of course, there really is a life that depends on you taking care of yourself: your own.
So, how can you develop a sense of accountability?
1) Accountability to yourself
Imagine yourself 10 years in the future. What do you look like? How do you feel? Are you energetic and youthful, or tired and old? What are you doing? Are you crashed out in front of the TV or are you having fun being active? Are you happy and content, or do feel like you’re missing out on the joy of life? Are you achieving your potential or have you still got some work to do?
The you that’s here today is entirely accountable for that vision of you ten years down the track. Much of how your future health and wellbeing is in your hands right now.
TASK: Imagine that the future you is talking to today’s you about the diet and lifestyle choices that you are making. Write down what they would ask you to continue doing, or do differently, and make these your goals. Look at your list daily and be reminded that the choices you make today will help decide your future.
2) Accountability to your loved ones
We all have dependants of some kind, whether it’s kids, parents, friends, pets or neighbours. Taking care of yourself means that you will be in the best position physically and mentally to take care of them.
TASK: Write down a list of all your dependants and loved ones. Then write down how they might suffer if you don’t take care of your health and wellbeing. For example, your husband might be depending on you to join him on exciting world travels when you both retire. If you don’t take care of your health now, will you let him down? Or perhaps your children are depending on you being a fun-loving and energetic grandparent to their own children. If you’re not focussed on staying fit today, that might not happen in the future.
Next to the list of people and how they are depending on you, write down what you can do to make sure that you will be there for them. You can share this list with them or keep it for yourself. Look at your list daily and remember that these people are all counting on you.
3) Accountability to a tribe
Not wanting to let down our fellow group – or tribe – members helps to drive behaviour. A healthy sense of competition and wanting to stay up with everyone else is another benefit for being a part of a group.
TASK: join or create a group of people who have similar goals to you and help make each other accountable for reaching them.