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It’s a New Year - Make Accountability a Resolution!

Tanya Sharma
It’s a New Year - Make Accountability a Resolution!

What is accountability? By definition, “it is taking or being assigned responsibilities for something that you have done or something that you are supposed to do.” We can take this far beyond that. Accountability means doing what we say we will do, always, on time and to the best of our ability. It means setting goals and achieving them. It means consideration of others, saying yes to things we know we aspire to do and are capable of doing, and being able to say no when we are not confident that we can complete something successfully.

It sounds easy, doesn’t it? But it not always that simple. Everyone is busy, with multiple tasks and responsibilities to work, family, and friends. Time is limited, and precious. Saying yes and taking on an additional project, then finding there is not sufficient time to complete it, does not represent being accountable. It is important that we learn to say no when necessary – better that then not being able to follow through and reach a successful conclusion to a commitment. Importantly, do not compare yourself with others – your win is your win! Your list of responsibilities is different than theirs, and your responsibilities are yours to accomplish. If you have setbacks, don’t let it stop you from jumping back in and proving to yourself you can do it! When you keep the promises and the commitments to yourself, you gain accountability to yourself.

We want to be accountable to ourselves, our work, our families, our friends, our projects. If we feel overwhelmed by this, accountability partners can help. If we share our goals with others that we trust to support us, we become accountable to not just ourselves but also to our accountability partner, and we are more likely to complete our task because we have made a promise to someone else. We also have someone to confer with and bounce ideas off, a partner who can offer their view of potentially different approaches to meet the finish line.

I have accountability partners for each of my primary goals: one helps me stick to my goal of reaching out to more people for Women in Pharma engagement; one mentors me in my quest for potential clients for my new start-up; another guides me to meet my learning objectives; another supports me in maintaining my diet and exercise regime.

Tools that can help us be accountable include maintaining calendars, journaling, keeping notes of “things to do” and checking them off our list as we complete them, planning in advance and scheduling ourselves to ensure we make the time to complete multiple tasks when necessary.

How do you keep yourself accountable? Do you have a healthy ecosystem that helps you feel excited and motivated? Do you maintain an organization system to keep yourself prepared and able to establish priorities? Perhaps you have your own ways to ensure you reach your goals – share them with others to help them maintain their accountability.

Celebrate small wins as well as large ones. Route for yourself. You did what you set your mind to do! You have shown you are someone who comes through, does what you say you will do! It shows you have integrity. You are accountable!

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