Goal-setting can be daunting. With all of the obstacles that may come up, it can be easy to lose motivation or let life get in the way. There are plenty of ways to combat these issues, but the easiest one is also simple and free — find yourself an accountability partner.
When someone else is there to rely on — and when we know they are relying on us — we can more easily push past the barriers that may have stopped us on our own. Still not convinced? Here are five ways that having an accountability partner will improve your motivation and help you achieve your goals.
Improved Commitment. An accountability partner creates the expectation of follow-through, and that expectation breeds motivation and commitment. Studies show that 36% of people give up on New Year’s resolutions by the third week. When you commit with someone else, you’re 65% more likely to do it. If you set a date to be accountable for that workout together, the odds reach 95%! Knowing we aren’t working to achieve something by ourselves creates a greater desire to succeed.
Eliminates Excuses. When we’re alone, it can be hard to overcome the temptation to skip a workout or break healthy eating goals. However, if someone is relying on us to be at the next live class or depending on us to avoid fast food with them, we’re more likely to check those excuses at the door. Working with someone else can give you a frame of reference for your goals, and even stimulate some healthy and fun competition!
Solutions to Challenges. Life is always going to throw obstacles our way, but having an outside perspective can highlight solutions we may otherwise miss. “I don’t have any weights,” becomes, “Let’s use milk jugs filled with water,” or, “I don’t have time to exercise,” turns into, “We can do a 10-minute Bootcamp before work!” The CDC found that you’re more likely to try something in a new way or be more adventurous when you have someone else supporting you.
Personal Cheerleader. Negative thoughts pop up all the time and can be a major roadblock. When we beat ourselves up for missing a day or get frustrated over slow results, an accountability partner can help us see the bright side. Sometimes, they can even push us to work even harder. A study of 704 people at the University of North Carolina showed that those who worked out with a buddy for a 15-week fitness course consistently lost more weight and inches off the waist than those who worked out alone. A good partner will be quick to point out that even after missing a day, we still accomplished more this week than the week before and held that plank for a minute longer.
- Positive Thinking. So far we focused on what an accountability partner can do for you, but there are benefits to being one yourself too. Accountability should be mutual and our desire to be a good partner can fuel positivity and creative thinking. It is sometimes easier to be positive, reliable, and solutions-oriented when your partner is struggling than it is when you are yourself.
Sure, all of these benefits sound great, but where do you look for an accountability partner? For Echelon members, this isn’t an issue. Our community is full of supportive people looking for their own accountability partners, so join our Facebook Group and you can find the person who will be the key to your success!