This post is brought to you by Ken Wimberly, founder of the Legacy Journal app.
Like most of the world, I have spent a considerable amount of time trying to figure out how to find the motivation and become more committed to the goals I have set for myself.
Last year I endeavored on an experiment to add daily accountability into my life to help me achieve my health & wellness goals for the year.
The focus of this article is how accountability will help your health & wellness goals, yet it also applies to every aspect of your life – business, financial, relationships, spirituality, family – all can be improved when we get intentional about what we want and put accountability in place.
I started in January with me and two other folks that committed to a daily text thread to report to each other what we had done for the day to work towards our health-wellness-fitness goals. By February, our group of three had grown to a group of seven (clearly the idea resonated with other people).
Our commitment was simple – a daily group text that would take less than 1-minute. The results were profound. I believe there are 5 keys to the success of this process.
“When performance is measured, performance improves. When performance is measured and reported back, the rate of improvement accelerates.” —Pearson’s Law
Key #1: Have a Goal Powered by a Big Why
We started by sharing our current goals with each other and why those goals were important. HINT: knowing the why behind your goals is 90% of the battle! Simon Sinek did a great job of summarizing the importance of starting with WHY in his TED talk that can be found here.
When we tie our goals to the greater purpose in our lives the goals take on a much deeper meaning. They move from being “resolutions” or “wishes” into actual commitments.
Understanding that the successful accomplishment of those goals will get you one step closer to manifesting your destiny will fuel you push beyond the discomfort that will surely come your way.
Knowing your accountability partners WHY will give you the ammunition you need to be a great partner and PUSH THEM when they get weak or start to make excuses.
Key #2: Keep Your Commitment Daily
In the best-selling book, The ONE Thing, Gary Keller explains that on average, it takes around 66-days to form a new habit. In fact, depending on the activity you are trying to create as a habit in your life, it could take up to a year to solidify the habit.
In my life I have found that most things take me about 90-days of continuous activity to become habits in my life. Exercise is certainly no exception.
It is also easier to form the habit if we do something the same time each day. For most of the world, we have more energy (and less commitments) early in the morning. If you wake up at 5 AM, there is generally no one demanding your time.
The important thing here is to do something DAILY. Even if it is just 10-minutes of brisk walking, the daily commitment will change your life.
When we take one day off, it is very easy to take another day off, and fall into a pattern of sporadic (at best) activity. With a daily commitment, there are simply no excuses. It gets done daily.
Every. Single. Day.
Key #3: Know Your Outcome
If we are ever to achieve our goals, we must first see very clearly what our lives will look like once those goals are realized.
As humans, we have something that know other species has…the power of imagination. We must visualize what our life will look like when we accomplish our mission.
We must see it in our minds and revisit that vision of our future constantly so that it becomes our reality.
Will Smith once said, “Once I have decided what I’m going do, it’s done. It’s already done. The second I decide it’s done, it’s already done. Now we’ve just got to wait for the world to see.”
We must know our outcome. We must know that we will succeed. We must BELIEVE in ourselves. We must know that success is the only option.
Once we have made the decision and committed to ourselves, the universe will rally behind us and make manifest our destiny.
Key #4: Get the Negativity Out of Your Life
“Changing you can seem very difficult. Changing a pattern is not that hard.” – Tony Robbins
It is often said that we become the sum of the 5 people closest to us in our lives. The circle is actually much larger than just 5 people, and the influence of negativity can be toxic.
Many times people will hear your goals and cast stones your way. They will tell you that it’s not possible. That your pushing too hard. That you should be more “reasonable.”
Don’t listen to them.
You deserve to live an Epic Life. You deserve to achieve your wildest dreams. You deserve to transform your life.
It starts with your mindset. Napoleon Hill taught the world about mindset in his infamous book, Think and Grow Rich.
Sometimes the negativity can come from within. The voices in your head might be saying, “I’m not good enough. I don’t have that kind of skill/talent. I’m not smart enough. I’ve never done that kind of thing before.”
Get rid of those voices and replace them with, “I am worthy!” Because you ARE WORTHY. And live your life as if you deserve all the greatness that is in store for you.
Your accountability group can be a wonderful resource for positive encouragement. Choose them well.
Key #5: Track Your Results and Celebrate Little Victories
It is important that you track your success each day. If it is time at the gym, log your results.
Miles on the trail or on the road, log your results.
Tracking your results will show you progress over time. It will also provide a little dose of daily motivation to keep you going.
As you are tracking your progress, celebrate the little victories. Finished your first 7-days in a row? HOORAY! Give yourself a pat on the back and share the excitement with your accountability group.
Hit your 30-day target for weight loss? HECK YES! Celebrate and shout it out to the world. You are WINNING!
The little victories will carry you to intermediate victories, which will ultimately take you to your BIG GOAL.
2019 Results: Iron Sharpens Iron
“The more specific the plan is, the more likely it is to achieve the desired result.” – Dick Dillingham
Our little accountability group had some crazy impressive results. Here is a snapshot of a what our crew accomplished.
Jake – has run 2+ miles daily since he began the process in Q1 2019
Nate – completed the 75 Hard program (75 days of continuous working out with TWO workouts per day)
Knox – completed a Whole30 and hit his target weight goal
Brian – transitioned out of a very toxic relationship, made a significant career change, and found love
Jason – climbed and summited multiple mountains in the Swiss Alps
Lucas – completed an Ultra Marathon (after not having run more than 8 consecutive miles in the past 10-years)
For me, I nailed my goal of exercising every single day in 2019. I couldn’t have done it without the support and encouragement of my tribe.
- 79,169 push-ups
- 78,381 ab exercises
- 6,229 pull-ups
- 41,251 squats
- 28,750 lunges
- 2,783 burpees (yep, there is opportunity for growth here)
- 63,900 jumping jacks
- 54,615 dips
- Ran 370 miles on trails, roads, and treadmills
- Ran the Cowtown Half Marathon
- Completed my 10th Tough Mudder event
Conclusion: Putting it All Together
Start by setting a big goal that is powered by your greater purpose, your WHY that drives your life.
Share that goal and your why with your accountability partner(s) and learn about their goals/purpose.
Make a commitment to do something every single day that will get you one step closer to your goal.
Visualize very clearly what your life will look like when you accomplish your BIG GOAL. Believe in yourself and know that you are destined for victory.
Get rid of the negativity in your life. This is often people. It can also be things like the “news,” reality TV, and social media.
Check-in daily with your accountability partner (or group).
Celebrate the little victories along the way.
Don’t delay…get started today. Those who take action in their lives are the ones who change the world.
“Action is the foundational key to all success.” – Pablo PicassoJournal