11 ways to hold yourself accountable for your goals

11 ways to hold yourself accountable for your goals

Schedule check-ins, go public, sign a contract, put money on the line, etc.

Stay on track and achieve your goals with accountability. Different forms of accountability work for different people. Read the ideas below and find what works for you.

1. Tell someone

Share your goals with your:

  • Friends
  • Family members
  • Co-workers
  • Online support group
  • Therapist

Share your goal, how you will achieve it, and by when. Sometimes the simple act of telling somebody what you will achieve and knowing they might ask you about it will push you to achieve it.

2. Schedule check-ins

Have someone follow up with you daily, weekly, or monthly via:

  • Phone
  • Email
  • Text
  • Facebook message (or other form of social media)

You’re more likely to do something when you know someone is going to follow up with you about it.

3. Go public

Use social media to share your goals and progress:

  • Post your goal on Facebook.
  • Share weekly or monthly updates on Twitter.
  • Start a blog about your weight loss journey.
  • Keep a video diary on Youtube.

Instead of worrying about people judging you, think about the encouragement you might receive and the people you could inspire.

4. Keep a food journal

A food journal is a good way to hold yourself accountable for what you eat. For additional accountability, commit to showing somebody your food journal at the end of each day or week.

If you know you have to record what you eat, you may decide against that big piece of cake or other temptation. A study of 1,685 overweight and obese adults showed the more days a week they kept a food journal, the more weight they lost. How to keep a food journal.

5. Join an organization

Join an organization such as Weight Watchers and commit to attending weekly meetings and weigh-ins. Where to find weight loss support

6. Join a team challenge

Join a weight loss challenge. Many gyms, communities, hospitals, and companies offer health and weight-loss related challenges.

Joining a team challenge can provide friendly competition, accountability, and also a network of people who are striving to achieve the same or similar goals. These are also people you can keep in touch after the challenge is over.

7. Recruit a workout buddy

Make plans to exercise with somebody. Set a specific day, time, and location for your workout. You’re more likely to stick to your exercise plan when you know somebody is relying on you. How to stay motivated during your workout

8. Hire help

Hire a personal trainer, dietitian, or weight loss coach. Knowing you have paid for an appointment with someone (and usually with a cancellation fee) can help you keep your appointment and follow through with any ‘homework’.

This can get expensive so be sure you plan other forms of accountability once your sessions are up.

9. Sign a contract

Write up a contract. State your goals, how you will achieve them, and the rewards or consequences of achieving them (or not). Sign your contract to make it official and have a friend, family member, or accountability partner witness it.

10. Put money on the line

  • Commit to paying a friend, family member, or co-worker a designated amount of money if you don’t achieve a particular goal.
  • Give a friend a certain amount of money and earn it back as you achieve the goals you set. If you don’t achieve your goals, your friend gets to keep the money.

You can put anything on the line; it doesn’t have to be money. You can put housework, babysitting, movie tickets, lottery tickets, or anything else on the line. Find something that will motivate you to achieve your goals.

11. Sign up for a race

Sign up for a 5k, 10k or any other race/event.

Registering for an event can provide motivation and accountability to start or stick to an exercise plan. If you don’t train for it, you might not be able to complete the race.

Signing up with a team provides additional accountability to train so you don’t let your team down.

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About the Author
Stephanie Averkamp

About the Author was created by Stephanie Averkamp, a recognized health and fitness professional and sole-author of the content on this website. Stephanie's approach to weight loss emphasizes making small, realistic, and permanent lifestyle changes. Read more...

Stephanie Averkamp

Our Approach: Short-term solutions (like dieting) are unrealistic and ineffective because at some point they end. As soon as a diet or program ends, so do the results. Permanent weight loss is a journey; it's not a race or competition and there is no finish line. Read more...