Accountability, as defined, is the condition of being accountable or responsible. Accountability Partner is someone who helps you keep your commitment and reach your goals.
The Right Accountability Partner
Your accountability partner is not someone you can just hire. You may think that your friend would be the perfect accountability partner, but no. No matter how close you are to him/her, it still might not work. You should share the following things with your accountability partner:
My first accountability partner was Rafael*, a college friend. He was like my male version, and I was his. We have the same motivations and goals in life. A few years back, I asked him if he wanted to be accountability partners and he agreed, but nothing happened. It didn’t work out because despite having the same goals, we have different mindsets. I try to live a balanced and make time for personal growth while he focuses on work (to provide for his parents and siblings).
Since it didn’t work out with Rafael, the next person would be my boyfriend. He has always been supportive of me. It was actually him that convinced me to create my blog in 2016 (although I started it in 2019). My boyfriend and I share the same mindset in different aspects of life, especially in health and fitness. At the end of the day, he always checks up on me: “Have you taken your vitamin?”; “Did you do your pull up?”; “Have you worked out?” and I do the same. He and I complement each other like bacon and eggs, but we have contrasting personalities. He’s relaxed and well, I’m uptight. His idea of personal growth is learning about science and technology while mine is learning productivity and life hacks.
My boyfriend is my accountability partner in health and fitness, but Ranger* is my accountability partner in personal growth and improvement. He’s my friend from Toastmasters Club and we get along well because he likes reading and telling knock-knock jokes like me. Him being my accountability partner was unexpected. It started because of a book club. I invited him to Entrepreneurs Book Club, a Facebook group I manage. We attended the book discussion on Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less in June. Then in July, the new book was 12-Week Year, which talked about weekly accountability meetings (WAM). Since virtual discussions are held once a month only, Ranger suggested that the two of us have our own weekly book discussion. And it worked! We’ve been talking once a week since July.
You don’t need to share all three things, even sharing two qualities is enough. Rafael and I have the same goals and personality, but we don’t have the same mindset that’s why it didn’t work out. My boyfriend and I have the same goals and mindset, but different personalities, and yet it still works. Ranger and I share the same goals, mindset, and personality, so it works. It’s safe to say that the best quality to share with your accountability partner is mindset.
How Accountability Partner Works
The reason accountability partners works is because of the commitment one person has with the other. There’s a mutual agreement to help each other achieve their goals. But how does it work?
1. Casual Check In
My boyfriend and I talk before I go to bed and that’s when he checks in whether I’ve taken my vitamins or did my pull-ups. If I didn’t do any of the two, he’d make me feel guilty (in a good way) and remind me to do both the next day.
2. Weekly Meeting
With Ranger, we have a weekly meeting. We’re not too strict with our agenda, it’s an open discussion about how the past week has been; what we’re currently working on; productivity, hobbies, goals, business, and takeaways from the book we’re reading.
If you notice, the two ways are similar in the sense that a commitment has been made: My boyfriend and I talk every night just to check up on how our day went while Ranger and I have a 1-hour appointment every Tuesday.
How Your Accountability Partner Can Help You Succeed
1. See things from a different perspective.
An accountability partner can give another perspective. You think your plan would work because you’ve thought about it over and over again, but in reality, you fail to see its flaws because you’re attached to it. Once you tell your accountability partner your plan, he can help you make it better.
2. Learn from the successes and failures of others.
They say that experience is the best teacher, and it’s true. But you only have a limited time on earth to make all the mistakes you can make just to learn. Your accountability partner’s experience can teach you as well.
3. You can keep track of your performance.
The reason you have an accountability partner is to help you achieve your goal. When someone is checking your progress, you’re likely to track your performance, so you can share your wins with your accountability partner.
4. It forces you to follow on commitments.
It’s easy to fall off the wagon when you’re alone in your journey, but when someone is expecting you to get things done, you try hard to not let them down and do what you’re supposed to do–no matter what it takes.
5. Someone to challenge you.
Your accountability partner is someone who will show up every day to make sure you become a better version of yourself. When you feel like giving up, he’s going to push you to go on.
Not everyone can be your accountability partner, and it’s also okay to have multiple accountability partners. The important thing is you share the same goals, mindset, and personality with your accountability partner/s.