“I would like to know what an “Accountability Partner” is supposed to look/act like? I would like to know what I am looking for in this area? Someone to confide in, someone who will tell me what to do (ie; “Drill Sargent”?) really don’t know what this entails.”
This was a question asked by one of the members of our ‘Weight Loss, God’s Way’ accountability group.
So, here is my list of 10 things to look for in an accountability partner which are also pointers on being a great accountability partner.
- A great accountability partner will tune into the needs of the person they are supporting. They will never assume that they know what their partner needs, they will take the time and ask their partner how they can best support them on their journey and then act accordingly.
- A great accountability partner will check in with their partner especially if they have not heard from them in a while. Decide on how frequently you want to connect with each other and then commit to the schedule. It may be daily, weekly or just periodically.
- A great accountability partner will lovingly challenge their partner when they hear them making excuses. The best way to do this is to continually remind your partner if their excuse will help them accomplish their desired goal. They will also listen for the use of a lot of words like; ‘but’, ‘should’, ‘wish’ and ‘was going to’, ‘should have’ and ‘try’. Look for definitive words like, ‘I will’, and ‘I commit to’.
- A great accountability partner will pray for their partner.
- A great accountability partner will share their life experiences to support and encourage their partner without ever preaching or criticizing.
- A great accountability partner will show patience and understanding to their partner by truly understanding what they’re going through. Use phrases like, ‘I understand’ or ‘I get it’ to show empathy.
- A great accountability partner will do more listening than talking. People are not always looking for an answer to their problem, they sometimes just need someone to listen. Be available to your partner and try to return messages at your earliest convenience.
- A great accountability partner will operate within their scope. Being an accountability partner does not make you a professional psychiatrist, nutritionist, personal trainer or counsellor. Be ready to refer your partner to someone else or admit to them that the conversation is outside of your comfort level.
- A great accountability partner cares enough to confront. This relationship will require maturity and transparency. Be bold enough to confront if you sense your partner is being evasive or superficial while being loving enough to understand that they may not be ready to share at this point in the conversation.
- A great accountability partner will leave you feeling better at the end of your interaction. Offer a word of encouragement, edification, support or something that will let your partner know that you are doing a great job and that you truly believe in them.
Please feel free to add anything else that you can think of in the comments section below…
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