Lessons in Success: #19 Accountability and Tracking your Goals
Today, my theme for you to consider is Accountability.
I've been going to a personal coach, Rob Seidenspinner of Sage Circle Coaching, for a while now, and the one thing that I think has been the most beneficial for me in terms of my personal and professional development has been the opportunity, week after week, to check in and make sure that I am making progress towards my goals.
As a reminder, a coach is there to work with you to achieve your own goals. They work with you to identify what you consider to be limitations and they give you a framework in which to move forward with your development.
When I was just getting married, in 2001, I sat down with a big sheet of paper and listed out all the ideas that were floating around in my head: at the time, I was engaged, had just left my job, and was getting ready to start proactively planning the next phase of my life.
With a big selection of themes, desires, requirements, likes and dislikes, and non-negotiables, I had an opportunity to clarify and think a little more about what it was I was truly going to do with my life. After three years of doing my own personal development, I had hit a plateau and that's when I contacted my coach, who has assisted me in navigating through this next decade.
Accountability is key to any coaching relationships.
For example, if I say "I'm going to do X" --- and I don't have anyone who follows up with me, the probability is high that "X" won’t happen.
If I say, "I’m going to do Y" and my coach asks, "how many? how much? when? why? how does that make you feel?" and then 7 days later we have a followup and the question is "so how is your progress towards Y?" ---- then I have a much higher probability of going forward and actually accomplishing "Y".
In the past five years, "Y" has included:
- publishing two books
- welcoming another child to my family
- moving us to a more secure location
- increasing my extended family connections
- an increase in the quality and types of referrals who we serve in my business
- a measurable increase in our typical new business account (tripling and sometimes quadrupling the average amount of our new customer accounts)
- better health and nutrition
- an introduction and acknowledgement of my personal "gremlin" who always wants to bring me backwards when I am moving forwards
- more systems and tools to support my life
- tools to cope with setbacks or roadblocks
I'm thrilled with how far I've gone and I fully intend to navigate through the next decade with the same kind of planning, goal-setting, and accountability.
Coaching is not for everyone. You'll want to identify your own limitations and figure out if going with an outside party is what you really want.
Consider your timing, too: perhaps you are gearing up for some big life changes and you need to support as you leap out into that scary unknown. Or, you may be in the midst of a life transition and you want guidelines and help integrating the experience into your core being.
If you're ready, I encourage you to find a coach and start making measurable progress in supporting your highest, most activated, and most real self.