15 May Stay Accountable When You Work For Yourself
From the lonely corner of my home that is my office… If you’re not there right now, you’ve probably been there or you’ve had to work from home while in your day-day job.
One of the biggest slaps in the face for me when I began working from home was how different it was to walking into an office or corporate environment everyday. As soon as you got there you were switched on and new exactly what you were doing, because there were other employees and even your boss there to help you remain accountable. You had no choice but to perform!
But then the washing would need doing, the dishes should be cleaned, I’ll just send this one message and make this quick phone call, I should really then put a post on Facebook… In the realm of what is my comfort zone, my humble abode, I actually had no idea what I was meant to be doing!
Being your own boss and working for yourself does have a lot of perks, but you should not kid yourself either. Being accountable to yourself is the biggest thing you should NOT take for granted, otherwise you could end up having a hobby and not a business.
Everyone is motivated in different ways but ultimately motivation is about having a reason for doing something. Fortunately, accountability is a big driver for people to get motivated and this is often why people source Coaches or Mentors to help with outside accountability.
The 3 biggest things I find that help with keeping myself accountable are:
Deadlines end up forcing you to think about what it will take to accomplish your particular goals. There is nothing like a strict deadline to help you prioritise your workflow. You will push yourself to get everything done. If we didn’t have deadlines with consequences we would lack commitment, motivation and our goals and tasks would go on and on.
Set Micro Goals
Goals are always great to know what you’re working towards, but they can seem very far fetched if you don’t have a strategy to actually achieve them. Micro-goals are like action steps that you take along the way, when accomplished, serve as building blocks to your larger goals.
Rewards all work the same, they encourage us to work harder to get something we want. They can come in the form of promotions, bonuses, gifts, events and even non-monetary rewards such as a kid free night in, an afternoon off to read etc.
Think about it, if you were an employee your manager provides formal feedback at regular intervals in the form of a performance review. Whether quarterly, semi-annually, or annually. So instead make a habit of managing yourself by taking an hour to perform a self-review.
Ask yourself: what have I accomplished in the least year, or month? Have I met my goals? Have I met my micro-goals? Have I built upon strengths and improved my weaknesses? Have I grown as a person? Even this simple, infrequent habit can transform your productivity, motivation, and success.
If this doesn’t work for you, look into creating an accountability group with some like-minded business people and meet regularly.