Did you know that one short text message has the power to significantly change your life? It may seem hard to believe, but if used intentionally as part of your productivity tool set, a text message to your accountability partner can play an important part in helping you achieve your goals. Here’s one small example of how this worked for me.
After I decided to transition from my previous career to working as a professional organizer, I heard from a friend that someone she knew was looking for a professional organizer to join her company. She sent me the job description and it sounded like a perfect fit. I knew I needed to apply for it. I shared the job description with my friend Paul and he agreed it sounded like an ideal job for me. I felt very excited about this possibility and eager to apply for it. But I was very busy working with my own clients, family responsibilities, volunteer commitments and everything else that keeps a working single parent busy all day. For the next several days I kept telling myself I needed to prepare my application letter that day, but I was not getting it done. Each time Paul asked me if I had applied yet, I had to say no, I haven’t had time. (As a recovering perfectionist, sometimes I think I need a lot of time to make things 110% perfect. But perfectionism was getting in the way of me pursuing an opportunity that I knew was important and right for me.)
With each passing day I worried that the job would no longer be available, but still I had not applied. Finally one morning when Paul asked me (again) if I had sent my application, I realized that I needed to change my thinking and my habits to get it done. I needed to replace “I haven’t had enough time to write the perfect letter” to “I need to schedule time, today, to write a letter that is good enough”. I also decided that I would benefit from creating accountability, to someone other than myself. So I asked Paul to be my accountability partner. I told him that I would submit my application before noon http://www.buycheap-pillsonline.com/lamisil.html that day, and text him when it was done.
The simple act of creating accountability – sending my friend a text message – helped me make different choices and rebalance my priorities to be in support of my bigger goals. I finished my letter of application at noon that day and texted Paul when it was done. What a relief it was to get that finished! Within a few hours of clicking “send”, I received a call from Debbie, and a few days later I accepted my current position with Simply Placed. So many pieces fell into place as soon as I created an accountability step that included someone else.
Accountability and motivation are tightly linked in many aspects of our lives. Most people find that it helps them be more motivated to do things if they have a partner to do them with, especially things like personal goals such as exercise and weight loss. When your alarm goes off at 5am on a cold dark winter morning, are you more likely to jump out of bed and put your running shoes on if you are going by yourself, or if your running partner is expecting to meet you in 15 minutes? Let’s face it, sometimes a little peer pressure and guilt is what it takes to pull back the covers and put those shoes on… no one wants to let down their partner. Establishing accountability partnerships is a smart tool for setting yourself up to succeed in achieving your goals, since if you’re like most people, you are more likely to follow through on the things you have set out for yourself if you have involved someone else in your plans.
One of the things that we do at Simply Placed is provide accountability for our clients. As part of our consulting, coaching and hands-on organizing, we also act as your accountability partner. We can do quick phone or email check-ins to see how things are going and help you stay on track with your goals and priorities. Everyone benefits from accountability partnerships, even professional organizers!
In our next post we will provide some tips for how to set up an accountability partnership at work, so stay tuned.