A frank discussion on how answering to someone can help you get your shit together.
Look. Accountability is a big buzz word for me. I was a part of a few groups in my early twenties where the lines between helping each other and invading each other’s privacy were regularly blurred. It was like opening the wound only to be chastised for having the cut in the first place. Needless to say, that’s not what I want for myself anymore.
But I do understand better than ever that my choices built my future. I write often about self love and self care. I live a pretty laid back life because I am a lucky woman married to a sweet man who asks only that I do what my body needs and my soul desires. For a long time the body needed sleep. It needed silence. The soul was superceded by the physical. So when I became well enough to indulge in things like massages and pedicures and manicures and shopping, I took those as the self care route that I deserved. I’m not saying it’s wrong to do those things. They’re just not things you build a life on.
When I started thinking about the future, I saw myself as a successful person living a successful life. I could see that for myself but couldn’t figure out how to get there. I’ve talked about finding what you want to do most, but today I’m talking about the dedication it takes to build a life around that decision.
It’s easy to forget that nothing happens by accident. My role models are people who worked incredibly hard for the things they have. I’m only just realizing that hard work is made up of a million little choices every day. It’s getting out of bed in time to exercise. It’s deciding to write this post today instead of tomorrow. It’s going to that event even though you’d rather watch Netflix. (I’m not talking about ignoring what your body needs. If you need a day of rest because your brain or your body isn’t working the way it should be, then take it). I’m talking about the times when we have the ability and the choice to do something good for ourselves and we ignore that in favor of the easier path.
Working for yourself can make accountability hard. You don’t really answer to anyone. Your only measure is the growth or lack thereof that you’re experiencing. But I like to think of the me five years from now as being the person I’m accountable to. I’m taking care of her by working hard today. I’m building a life that she’ll want to live and that I can live with today. I’m accountable to her and I’m accountable to the people who read my content and trust me to give them advice. I’m accountable to my husband who’s made sacrifices to give me a chance to be what I am today. I may not answer for every choice, but I answer for the accumalation of those choices. Accountability has to be about the direction you’re headed in life based on the decisions you are making. It is not a judgment of your character, but a promise to live up to who you are.
So how am I building accountability into my life? I’m taking myself seriously. I’m going to those events and believing that I am force to be reckoned with. I made myself an office that accomodates all of my needs at my desk. I audition for the roles that maybe seem out of reach. I email people every week to ask them if they want to work together. I act out the belief that I am capable of building the life that I want. When I make good decisions to further my career and better myself as a person, I’m telling myself that I’m worth that investment of time and effort.
You can build accountability into your life, too. Think of the people who want what’s best for you (not the people who just want things from you), and decide what kinds of decision would make them proud. Think of the you five years from now that will be living with your decisions from today. Know the difference between needed rest and laziness. Give yourself tangible goals to work toward. Let me know what you’re working on and I’ll check in with you!
How do you think of accountability? Does any of this resonate? Let me know!