Friday, February 11, 2011

Motivation: On being held accountable

“Sometimes the only way you can take a really good look at yourself is through somebody else's eyes.” ~From the television show Scrubs

Can someone please tell me if Mercury is in retrograde? Seriously! I’ve spoken to 4 people in the last two days who are just so sad and feeling so alone. Stress takes its toll! It affects your health, your family, your life. Whether you’re in a job you can’t stand, or you don’t have one at all; the feelings you’re experiencing can be overwhelming. I remember those feelings all too well. And if there is one pearl of wisdom that I can share from that experience, it is this: You are not alone. There are people around you who can and will help you. We will listen, we will advise, we will motivate, and we will hold you accountable. (And, yes, that’s a GOOD thing!) If you could only see yourself through someone else’s eyes! You would see that you are capable; you do have the power inside you that you need to succeed. You can change your circumstances, and with some support and guidance, you will make things better for yourself. And, you don’t have to do it alone!

I went to my first new accountability group meeting yesterday. Three of us who are in similar places in our careers met to share our goals and “to-do” lists. We discussed some strategies which may help us get to where we want to be. We will talk (or meet) weekly and hold one another accountable. We will make sure that each of us does what they say they were going to do. We will offer suggestions, provide support and direction, and keep one another focused on the “right” stuff. I already feel more productive!

I’ve written in the past about the importance of this kind of support, and I think for a career campaign, it really makes sense! When you’re looking for a job, you are basically self-employed. You set your own rules and you set your own timeline. The only person you hurt when you don’t do what you said you were going to is you! When your self-imposed deadlines go whooshing by, the only person who suffers the consequences is you! So, you continue to spiral down. You continue to feel guilty. You may even begin to even feel sorry for yourself… and the only person who can make it better???? You guessed it. YOU!

What if instead you had people holding you to those deadlines? What if you had a group of people relying on you to get things accomplished? What if those people held you accountable? Wouldn’t you be more likely to take action and get things done? And imagine how much better you will feel when those people are actually helping you pull yourself up, offering words of encouragement, and giving you ideas that you may not have come up with on your own! It’s always easier to give someone else good advice, isn’t it? And, the very act of helping someone else might just help you help yourself!

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