Maintaining accountability to myself has never been easy. If you have ever listened to Gretchen Rubin’s podcaster, Happier, you will no doubt have heard her talking about The Four Tendencies. This podcast is one of my top 5 favourites that I listen to. (You can find the other ones here). Gretchen has earmarked four distinct personality types when it comes to dealing with both inner and outer expectations, and by determining which personality type you are, you can adjust your behaviours to help you reach your goals.
Me, I am a classic Obliger. I am always willing to meet outer expectations, whether they are work, friends or family related, but when it comes to doing something for myself, I always seem to fail.
At the beginning of the year, I had a few habits that I wanted to implement. Simple things, but things that would make me happy.
As an Obliger, for me to meet inner expectations I need to create external accountability. How did I do this? There are a number of ways to do this. I could have enlisted the help of a family member or friend. Or I could have joined some kind of an accountability group. But this time, all I really needed to do was to create a list.
Now I am not saying that this will work for everyone. I am not even saying that I will continue on the same path, but I am trying. And I have to say, my little notebook that I carry with me everywhere, is doing a really great job of keeping me accountable.
It was so simple! I just drew up a very simple grid on the front page of my notebook. After that, I chose 5 areas that I wanted to improve on and complete every single day. I numbered the days 1 to 31 on the left of the columns on the page and then sectioned off 5 boxes per day that I could use as checkboxes. Don’t worry if my description isn’t painting the right picture here. I have photographed it below.
It’s not fancy, it’s not pretty, but it is highly effective. I WANT to check all of those boxes every single day. It is kind of like a competition with myself.
If you can’t read what I have written in my checkboxes, they are as follows. Drink 2 litres of water, take my vitamins, walk Max (the dog), wash up after dinner and use my Tooth Moose every night after I brush my teeth. (That is on instruction from my dentist!)
So that is how I am keeping myself accountable. I am also leaving my notebook in full view for everyone else in the family to see. Something I never, ever do. That gives me another level of accountability right there, as my hubby would be the first to tell me I missed a box!
Want to see a little bit of cuteness? This is Max with his teddy. And I have to admit, Max is loving the new schedule of a walk every single day!