As a life coach, your overall role is to support and encourage your clients to achieve their goals. You do this by helping them to create a vision for their lives while encouraging them to discover goals, blocks, and strategies on their own through supportive and targeted questioning. A successful life coach will use their unique personal and professional experience as well as their life coaching education to help clients see things from different perspectives and expand their mindsets. Perhaps one of the more critical responsibilities that you have as a life coach is that of an accountability partner.
The word “accountability” sometimes gets a harsh reputation because it seems to imply judgment, disapproval, or blame. In the worlds of life coaching and goal-setting, accountability is one of the foundations of the client-coach relationship. An accountability partner’s role is to act as an informed ally and a compassionate motivator, not a rigid disciplinarian. In your life coaching practice, you have the great privilege of being that supportive ally and partner to your clients. When clients are held responsible for their goals in a supportive manner, they are much more likely to stay on track and remain motivated to achieve them.
Why Accountability Partners Work
There is much research that shows that accountability is one of the key indicators of successful goal achievement. In fact, when a person sets a goal but doesn’t share it with anyone, they are far more likely to give up on the goal and choose the easier road.
Why is accountability so useful when it comes to sticking with and reaching goals? How can you maximize your role as an accountability partner to help your clients continue to achieve their goals in the future?
Sharing goals = Setting an Intention
When a goal is stated out loud to another person, it becomes a real commitment, not just a thought or aspiration. It is no longer a hazy idea but a concrete plan that you can put action behind. As a life coach, you help your clients develop positive goals that align with the future that they desire. Then, you get to be the trusted partner that they share their goals with, helping them set their intentions for their life. As soon as they state their goals out loud to you, you have both set a beautiful plan into action. Encourage your clients to not only state their goals out loud but to write them down.
Fear of Letting Others Down
As human beings, we all have a natural desire to belong and to please the people we care about most. This fact is one of the reasons why accountability partners work so well. When you state your goals or intentions to another person, you have immediately given that person a stake in your success, and you do not want to disappoint them. Now, there is a person who has expectations that you will follow through on what you said. They may also follow up with you on your goal, ask questions about your progress, and remind you of your commitment when they see you falter. You have created a different level of responsibility in achieving your goal than you would if you had kept your intention to yourself.
As a life coach, you create a relationship with your clients that allows them to feel comfortable opening up to you and sharing the details of their lives that they may never have shared with another person before. The trust and respect that you create in your interactions with the client will help you to be successful in your role as an accountability partner.
Your role as an accountability partner is one of the most significant assets that you can give to your life coaching clients. Holding them responsible for the goals they have set will propel them forward, keeping them focused and motivated, even when things get tough. In your life coaching practice, how can you be a more effective accountability partner for your clients?