I’m good at making plans, but never seem to meet my self-imposed deadlines. How can I make myself accountable for reaching creative goals?
-A performance artist, Bergen, Norway
Staying focused and sticking to deadlines is one of the toughest challenges for anyone who works for themselves. When you’re solely responsible for setting and meeting your own deadlines, everything starts and ends with you. There’s no one around to reprimand you when you screw up or to motivate you when you go into full-on slacker mode. But just because you work for yourself doesn’t mean you have to go it alone.
That’s why you need to find an accountability partner.
An accountability partner is someone who you meet or talk with, on a regularly scheduled basis, who is mutually committed to meeting certain goals in their own career. You need to find someone you like and have something in common with, but might just as easily find a good match with a friend or colleague who doesn’t work in a creative field. The person you choose as your accountability partner should be someone you can trust enough to help you work through your problems and really give you guidance when you hit those really rough spots. And you should be prepared to do the same for them.
Most importantly, you need to pick the right partner. An accountability partner shouldn’t be your best buddy or your Mom. You need someone who will hold you responsible for your actions and kick your butt when you spend too much time on Twitter. Sure, an accountability partner can encourage or inspire you, but they need to be more than just a cheerleader. They need to be able to provide you with guidance and a feedback, and be able to point out when you’re procrastinating or making excuses.
Once you have a partner, you need to schedule frequent e-mail check-ins and regular phone or skype. Don’t flake out on this part. Just knowing that you’re expected to report back with your progress each week can be a huge motivating factor. I will definitely help you reach your goal faster.
The 5 Step Art Career Make-Over
Includes the 5 Step Guide, a Short-Term Action Worksheet, plus a Bonus Podcast to walk you through each step and get you motivated to get to work.
Send your questions to Kesha:
Subject Line: Fresh Rx