There are lots of ways in life to make yourself accountable, such as:
- Get an accountability partner
- Keep strict lists
- Go into politics
OK, I digressed on that last one, but you could insert “do whatever it is you’re that supposed to do in the public eye” so that literally everyone becomes your accountability partner. Some people don’t need these tools, because their natural bent is to be intentional in everything they do. These people have a gift, whether they know it or not, that most people only covet. That gift is self-discipline.
I’ve developed some self-discipline in certain areas of my life, but it’s not my natural inclination. I’ve made exercise a habit, and grown to love running and lifting weights, whereas in my younger days I only thrived on playing competitive soccer. I love to get up early and get started, usually with the aforementioned workout, though Saturdays I am intentional about sleeping in.
I’m sure we all have many examples of our own intentional self-discipline; however, the one that has worked best for me is the biggy: starting my own business. Why? Because when you own the business, it is impossible to blame anyone else for anything that goes wrong. Here’s how.
- If you don’t do it or delegate it, it will not get done.
- If it breaks, you are responsible.
- If your VP of whatever makes a mistake, you hired, trained, prepared and equipped that person.
- If your customer service sucks, it started with you.
- If your product doesn’t work, it was based on your idea.
- If you don’t reach your company goals, it really is your fault.
- If your company is filled with politics, dissent, disengaged employees…blame the boss: you.
I could go on and on and on. In today’s world of victim mentality, blaming others for our own problems, and looking to someone else for a way out, I prefer to be at the helm and held 100% responsible for my company’s performance. I started it. I run it. It’s my idea. If it fails, it’s my fault. I am accountable. I have people who help keep me on the right path and advise me in my areas of weakness (and strength!), but in the end, it comes down to my own actions and performance.
I like being 100% accountable. Do you?