Whether you are working from home, starting a side-hustle or a new business, keeping on task can be difficult. Wouldn't you agree that the distractions are inevitable. I would. Everyone has distractions in their life and keeping focus can be difficult. In order to maintain the grind and be successful, you need to set healthy boundaries for yourself. Being and holding yourself accountable is a trained skill that individuals need to own. How do you own it?
Here are 9 healthy habits that will make you more accountable when performed on the regular:
1.Write down your personal values
OWN YOUR CORE! Writing your values on paper will allow you to see on paper what you believe in and will lead to greater adherence. We all have beliefs and ethics, but being forward about them will help you become more accountable and help you to keep integrity!
2. Take Responsibility
When you have a deadline, a goal and a timeline it is easy to make the mark when it is achievable. But what if it isn’t? What if the goal you set out for yourself is too lofty, there isn’t enough time or family matters get in the way? Then you need to own it. Your shit, is your shit. You need to take responsibility for your actions; good, bad or indifferent. Highly accountable people take responsibility and are proactive in their initiatives.
“Accountability breeds response-ability.”
DR. STEPHEN R. COVEY
Be the one that takes the challenge of getting something done. This will not only look good in the eyes of executives, but will make you look like a rock star when you get your initiative done on time and on par.
3. Be on time
Set your deadlines, put them on the calendar, write them on your planner. Do anything and everything to ensure that you get your project and achieve your goal on time. Successful individuals hold an exceptional standard for meeting their deadlines. Many people thrive under pressure and if this isn’t you, be sure to give yourself adequate time to get the task at hand done. Manage expectations with others throughout the process and if it is only you that you must be accountable to, be sure to write the deadline down and put reminders on it. If you know that it will need an extension, do this early, not when your hitting your deadline at the 12th hour. As the saying goes, under promise and over deliver!
This one is so important and almost none of us do it... you probably guessed it...
4. You need to Say “No”
It is your responsibility to own your success and part of being successful is taking on projects that provide you with the greatest return. “No” is a very powerful word that can give you the freedom to spend more time on the items that you consider to be the most important.
Although it may be hard to say, “No,” it is a very important skill. By empowering yourself to manage your work and time appropriately, you are putting the emphasis on the things that take the most precident.
Yes, there are things that we should NOT say, “no” to, however discerning those activities from the time sucks that have no added value are what makes us unique and shows our integrity.
5. No excuses
We all have those people in their lives that make excuses and do not take accountability for their actions. An accountable person will own their actions and take responsibility for the consequences. If you mess up; well, your human and you learn from your mistakes.
"It is better to offer no excuse than a bad one" - George Washington, An Admonition to His Niece, 1791).
It's not worth making excuses for not getting something done on time. In that case we need to make more time for the things that are important. If we don’t place a high value on a initiative or a project, then we should be asking ourselves if we should be doing this it the first place.
6. Schedule your day out completely
This means that your entire workday is scheduled out. Each hour is accounted for on your calendar. Why? Because it will not only keep you on task, but it will give you a view of your day. Blocking personal working time for will allow you to batch your work and have productive, uninterrupted working time. It will also make it harder for you to take other appointments during those time slots.
7. Tell everyone
If you have a goal, a plan, a dream that you are working toward, one of the easiest ways to have your tribe hold you accountable is to tell them your plan. They will be resistant to ask you to collaborate during your working hours, they will ask you on an ongoing basis how your doing and where things are at. In cases where you would like feedback, having a small amount of people as an advisory council will get you constructive criticism and ongoing feedback. It will also be an outlet for accountability.
8. Create daily results lists
One of the best ways is to create daily results list. Put this list in the same place everyday (a notebook, a journal, whatever works for you). Notice I did not say, "TO DO LISTS"? Guys, this isn't new to the world, it may be just a new way of working for you.
"Too often we forget what our real result or outcome is and we start thinking instead that we have to write out a to-do list to make it happen. You have to get crystal clear about what it is that you want. The clearer you are about what it is you want, the easier it is to achieve it, because then you can design all of your activity around making progress toward achieving it." -Tony Robbins
if that isn't enough for you here is why...
The reason why we need to tackle a results list versus a TO DO LIST is that a task does not necessarily correlate to a result. You need to be specific with your goals and outcomes. Having a daily results list helps you focus on the key items that get you to your milestones.
Practice navigating in this way and you will find that it is so much easier to get what you need accomplished completed as the tasks will come naturally in achieving that goal.
9. Have a partner that holds you accountable
What is an accountability partner? Yes, some of you men may think it sounds soppy, but it's no different then going to play golf together or shooting some hoops. A little friendly competition and support never hurt anyone! In fact, it helps! An accountability partner is someone that you can honestly confide your goals, ambitions and dreams to and ensure that when and if you slip up that there is no judgement, rather someone to get you back on track.
Your partner should know your milestones to achieving your goals and be your support along the way. As a partner you should provide encouragement to your partner on a consistent / regular basis through check-in's, while also being a good listener.
What is the most important out of all of these top 9?
"The most-important accountability and reward tool for meeting deadlines? You. If YOU don’t take your own deadlines seriously, then it won’t matter" (Rishawn Bittle, michaelhyatt.com)
YOU are the most important factor in your accountability. You will reap the rewards or the consequences. Your choice. For more information on creating goals, check out my blog post How to Crush Your Goals: SMART Goals as well as Find Your Sellout Service by taking this Superpower Quiz! Crush those goals and do it without looking back!