Last Saturday I spent the good part of the day with a group of women who had set out on a year-long journey of improving their lives. I was asked to speak to this group on the topic of money and debt.
My presentation focused on values and money and how aligning our values with our spending plan ensures we are only spending money on the things we truly value in our lives. This way it helps to curb emotional spending and keeps us focused on the things that matter most.
But we covered many other topics as well because let’s face it – money is all-encompassing and touches every single aspect of our lives.
It was a real joy and blessing for me to be there with these women and hear their stories and see the determination in their faces that they would conquer debt. They were inspiring.
As I was driving home, I started thinking about how this group allows them to get the support they need to move forward with their plans. They have built-in accountability partners from which to chose from, something many women feel they don’t have.
HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER FOR YOU
But often what stands in our way of getting support has more to do with what we think then who we perceive as available to help us.
I know from coaching hundreds of women when the idea of an accountability partner comes up, I hear all sorts of reasons why it won’t work.
- Only wimps need support.
- If I ask for it, people will think I’m weak and don’t know how to take care of myself.
- People can let you down. Why set myself up to be disappointed?
- I’m embarrassed to ask. I don’t know how.
- It’s selfish to ask for support; I don’t deserve it.
Even if they aren’t thinking any of these limiting thoughts, they often pick the wrong person to help them on the journey.
So today I want to let you in on a little secret on how to pick the best accountability partner so that when you’re ready, and you’ve dismissed all those limiting beliefs on why you don’t deserve a partner, you can ensure you pick the right person to hold your feet to the fire.
When looking for a support person make sure you pick someone you like, trust and CANNOT manipulate. Rule out anyone who will fall victim to your rationalizations, excuses, and justifications for not following through. If you don’t know what I mean, don’t pick the friend you tell your money troubles too and then hits the mall with you and stands by while you rack up debt, telling you how much you deserve this new pocketbook and does or says nothing to stop you. To support you the person MUST NOT COLLUDE with you about how you don’t have the time, energy or inclination to do what you said you would do.
Got it? Good!
What you need is someone who demonstrates ruthless compassion in reminding you of your promise and someone who is not vested in the outcome.
To find this person, make a list of people in your life who fit the above description of a support person. Look at friends, family, ministers, coaches or therapists. If your list is short or non-existent, don’t worry. Just because you’re on the hunt for an accountability partner means you’ll find one. It just might take some time. Don’t get discouraged.
Once you decide on your accountability partner, ask yourself if you are willing to allow this person success in helping you?
Think back to another time when you used a support person or coach. Did you spend time and energy fending them off? What strategies did you use to avoid support?
One of the easiest ways to disable this behavior is to name them upfront.
If you do things like:
- Make promises you know you won’t keep. ?
- Avoid talking to your support person. ?
- Pretend you’re too busy to talk to them when they call. ?
- Try to push your agenda even though it hasn’t ever worked before. ?
- Be overly nice to your coach or support person by saying things like: “Thank you so much for caring” or ” I appreciate you so much.” ?
- Lie about what you did or did not accomplish. ?
Recognize that these are all tactics you’ll use, so tell your partner or coach up front! ?
A BIG word of caution here…don’t use a support person who is in the same position you are now. If you’re both trying to get out of debt and end emotional spending the likelihood of you colluding with one another is high. If you are both relatively new bloggers and struggle with the same issues you’ll more than likely not help each other much in the long run. Instead, pick someone who has already been successful as your partner.
Accountability partners can catapult you to success and help you reach your goals far quicker than going it alone. That’s why I’ve used coaches for my own growth and success since the early days when I too was just starting down the road to financial freedom.
If you feel like coaching is something you might be ready for, follow this link to learn about my personal coaching services and follow this link to learn about my blog related coaching packages and services.
No matter what you decide, professional accountability or a close friend, know that this type of strategy WILL make a huge difference in how much and how quickly you succeed.