Most gyms and health food stores are bursting with eager masses on January 1st. However, a short month later, yoga classes are back to normal attendance and Whole Foods is back to just its crunchy regulars. Within a month, our once lofty goals of weight loss, budgeting, and apocalyptic meal planning are turning into McDonalds, Netflix, and busy schedules.
Going into February, we want to focus on the most difficult part of goal setting, personal accountability. Whether setting health, personal, or corporate goals, The Great 8 of Personal Accountability can turn your goal setting into goal achieving.
1. Forget the past. Thoughts of “what should have happened”, “who was supposed to do it”, and “why we are in this situation” are a waste of time. What matters most is what is currently happening, what is being done about it, and what solutions are on the table. Invest time in present and future outcomes; do not waste time by blaming, complaining, or accusing.
2. BYOB, Be Your Own Boss. Start telling your days what to do, not letting situations, distractions, or people dictate your time. The most successful leaders plan, prepare, and manage their time based on quarterly, weekly, daily, and even hourly expectations. Respect your time, give it purpose and parameters, and you will gain flexibility to respond and react rather than disrupt and distract.
3. Say No. “No” can be an incredibly empowering word. Get in the habit of responding honestly and setting yourself free from overcommitting and overcompensating.
4. Do it now or schedule it now. Most people fall into procrastination, creeping deadlines, or forgotten responsibilities by taking notes, mentally or physically, that never get revisited. Either do a task immediately or schedule a time when you can complete it. No exceptions.
5. Own the outcome. Valued leaders take responsibility for 100% of the outcome regardless of success or failure. They manage through the result. Success is a celebratory tool, and failure is a vehicle for improvements and lessons learned.
6. Remove negative language, rewrite your internal dialogue. Eradicate the phrases, “not my job” or “not my issue”. Leaders are problem solvers and solution-oriented. Instead, they ask questions like “How can I help?” and “What am I doing to solve this problem?”.
7. Mirror, Mirror, on the wall, who is the most responsible of all? Reflect on your previous actions, language, and performance; are you a finger pointer or a helping hand? “Who is responsible here?” is the wrong question to ask. Be accountable for your actions and involvement, and you will answer your own questions, find solutions, and excel rather than drowning in problems that you create.
“The man who chases two rabbits, catches neither.”- Confucius
8. One rabbit focus. Good leaders must set their sights on a unanimous goal and operate their team as a hunter seeking one reward.
We hope, that for this February, you are able to accomplish all goals you set your sights on!