Accountability is a very important part of coaching. In large part is my job to figure out how much accountability to offer/provide. I think I’ve lost several potential clients lately because I’m very upfront in my consultations about not providing too much active accountability. My goal is for you to not need me. How can we get there if you are depending on me for accountability? It is always my goal to teach you to be accountable to yourself. Maybe I’m wrong, but isn’t that what we are all looking for? Not to say we don’t have people we rely on in many aspects of our lives. I think of it like a WWII bomber crew. (See a great, if schmaltzy movie, Memphis Belle.) We can’t “put those bombs in the pickle barrel” on our own. But don’t we want to be the pilot, the officer, running the show?
Of course we use experts and we outsource and we create a team if we can. That’s life in a highly specialized world. You might take a cooking class. I’ve taken classes in small business accounting, woodworking, Microsoft Excel. I have a gardening consultant because I can’t learn everything from books. I outsource my bookkeeping because that small business accounting class only served to educate me to the fact that that is not how my brain works. I have a tax attorney who does my taxes every year. Pre-pandemic I outsourced some of our laundry.
On the other hand, I grow most of my own produce in the summer. I do a lot of my own butchering, I do a lot of plumbing, some small carpentry, painting, and a little bit of electric. The point being that I run the show. I make the decisions about what I do and what gets outsourced. And, these things change over time based on resources, both professionally and personally.
But this isn’t actually the reason I wanted to write this post. I’m burying the lead. Check out this quote from a 20-year-old who I’ve been working with for about a year. Wonderful young lady. But she’s got a history of fighting me on making necessary changes until recently. But she’s really having some life-changing epiphanies lately. Maturity, perhaps? Anyway, the quote: “Being accountable to yourself goes hand in hand with loving yourself even if the answers you get don’t give you instant gratification.”
That came straight from a place of pure honesty and power inside her. I don’t think I could ever have drawn that out of her by having been her surrogate mom for the last year. I’ve been honest with her, a little tough on her, very supportive, and positive about all the progress she has made. And, one day she comes out with this wisdom beyond her years and the intention to put it to good use. I’ve helped give her the tools, but she’s been on her own journey to be ready to right here, right now, ready to use them. She’s now devouring the tools I’ve taught and am still teaching her to manage her ADHD and EF challenges in a new way. I can’t wait to see where she ends up in this world.
Standard Disclaimer: In an effort to foil my own perfectionist tendencies, I do not edit my posts much… if at all. Please excuse and typos, mistakes, grammatical errors, or awkward phrasing. I focus on getting my content down. In my humble opinion, an imperfect post posted is infinitely better than a perfect post that goes unfinished.