Thursday, 19 September 2019

Bringing focus - consistency - accountability to your life goal

Dear Reader,

Last month, my wife Ruchi and I attended a 5 day workshop Breakthrough to Success (BTS) in Arizona along with 300 other participants. This was conducted by Jack Canfield (co-creator of Chicken Soup for Soul series that has sold over 500 million copies). Jack turned 75 last month!!

One of the most useful concepts I learnt at BTS, was about having an Accountability Partner.

What if you could be more focused and consistent to your cherished goal? What if there is a way to review your progress? What if there is someone to keep you on-track? Research says that when you write your goal and report it regularly to another person, the probability of success goes up by 25%.

Accountability Partner concept is a way to support each other in accomplishing goals while spending only 25 minutes per week. After the BTS workshop, I found an accountability partner and felt the benefits within the first week.

Here are the guidelines that you can follow to get best results:

1.     Choosing a partner: Find someone who is committed to progress. Choose someone other than your spouse or your business partner. Preferably someone with less history with you.

2.     Goal: Share one important life goal for next 12 months with each other. Make it specific and measurable.

3.     Rule of 5: Goal achievement progresses faster when one follows Rule of 5. It means everyday do 5 specific mini steps that forward your goal. If my goal is to have a better work life balance, then 5 priority actions for next day can include

  • planning my work schedule for tomorrow,
  • set an alarm for ‘Me time’,
  • take at least 2 short breaks for myself during the day,
  • spend at least 10 mins talking / chatting with a friend or a family member,
  • spend x minutes off-screen in the evening.

Ideally each step should take less than 10 minutes, so the rule of 5 takes only 50 minutes of your day and yet focuses on an important life goal. These are simple single action steps and not complex tasks that may include many sub-tasks.

4.     Check-in schedule: Agree to a specific time every weekday to update progress with accountability partner. Keep weekends free.

5.     Check in duration: Check-in is ideally done by a short 5-minute call and/or exchange of text message, email or any other convenient way. Keep it limited to 5 minutes to ensure it remains easy and not a burden.  

6.     In the check-in: Share progress since last check-in on the promised steps. Just report the progress, no excuses. Promise 5 steps for the next day. Share insights and blocks you experience with your accountability partner.

7.     Both partners follow this protocol for the chosen life goal.

I find that it is a great win-win concept. Experiment with this concept for 2 weeks and feel the magic!  

Warm regards