Making Yourself accountable


Most times when I am both teaching and or training ……and having to think of a good way to explain something or get across a certain message, I find the words. Other times if you ask my students, I am most certain I miss the mark and I end up with a class of blank or bemused faces. Oops- time for another bad joke to cover my mess ? ha ha.   The times when I don’t get my point across is when one thought bounces to another quickly…then it makes me think of this idea or this story and it’s all a bit dis-jointed and a bit like a game of word association but in a different sense. My intention is good – I just get a bit excited sometimes.

Tonight though, my point was clear. Making yourself accountable is a great way to ensure you will follow through with something. Now, I consider myself a person of my word. If i say I will do something, I would consider it a dis-honor verging on humiliating if I don’t then do it. Of course there are times when I might not follow through- but those times are generally when events are somewhat out of my control. Ie : I said I would come to a party but then one of my kids get’s sick, or I said I would do the next tournament, but then I roll my ankle badly. Actually….I have competed (stupidly) whilst walking around on crutches after rolling my ankle on the Thursday night before the Kyokushin Nationals. It didn’t turn out well. Found myself against a much heavier (I would say 15 kgs heavier) Russian girl who pushed me around the ring. I didn’t have enough weight to hold my ground , but then I didn’t have the mobility to move around either so hence…….I lost after an extension. As I said…..I held my word and competed that time….but to my detriment. I lost, and my ankle has never healed properly since. Anyway….see how i digress. Monkey mind  :-)So….if you are a person of your word – make yourself accountable to something you wish to achieve and you will make it so. You will have to or risk the embarrassment and shame of not following through when you said you would. To someone who doesn’t care so much about their word…perhaps this strategy will not help, but hey, maybe it will bring out their best. And that’s what we hope for yes ?

Many business mentoring programs have systems where you have an ‘accountability person’ that you team up with. You touch base with this person each week (or whatever the program states) and you tell this person what steps you have taken within this week to get you towards your stated goal. They then do the same with you. It’s a great way of forcing you to be ready. We know we all step up the game when we ‘Have’ to. And when you know this person will be calling you – you will get stuff done. I do this often when I think perhaps I am slacking off or backing down from something I know I should do. In the dojo environment – I will announce to the class and my students something like ‘ I am grading at the end of this year’ and then suddenly – I have made a promise. Now- I have no choice and no excuse not to keep it. It’s a great drive . Perhaps simply telling a friend or work colleague a goal of yours is a good start. Maybe it’s…….I’m going to walk every day after lunch when I am in the office. Perhaps….even get them on-board so you can push each other on your off days. Again you are simply making yourself accountable for your actions by making a statement that you intend of keeping – now you are just recruiting someone to watch out for you – and someone you now have to answer to. Perhaps the more people you tell….the more powerful the drive. I suppose that never stopped a good politician- but then that’s another story.

Why don’t you try something small this week. Give yourself a little test.  What have you got to lose  ?

Have Fun and Happy Achieving !




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