Get your motor runnin', Day 12: Accountability and the motor


12 days into this c#@ksucker and I'm finding as many things derailed as on-track.

As always, there are multiple reasons behind the disconnect between intention and fruition. First, there is the reality that for whatever reason, most of us overestimate what we can get done in a day, and I'm no miraculous exception to that rule. Quite the contrary: I've been tracking my time religiously for over two years now, and while I have a very good idea of how long it takes to craft three versions of a bullet slide template for a PowerPoint presentation, and an extremely good idea of how long it takes to write a 1,000-word column for actors about how to practice sound business principles, try applying this data to configuring a reasonably productive day and my math goes to hell in a bullet-train-powered handbasket.

Second, while I have been very good about setting up accountability for some things, the daily guitar practice, doing my marketing tasks and even writing in this blog (hel-lo, salutes!), I've been less good about other stuff.

Exercise is problematic for me, for example, on days that I don't stay at My Country House (a.k.a. The BF's) because without my four-legged conscience, I'm just as apt to blow off the walk as do it.

I've been rolling around the idea of getting fit in my brain, realizing I have to connect it to something, trying to remember what on earth it was that got me to blow all that money on a personal trainer some 5-odd years ago, when I was (not coincidentally) in the best shape of my life. I vaguely remember the decision to commit being preceded by a kind of defeated disgust over my persistent weakness post-Crohn's onset; the focal point of the disgust became my stick arms, which (again, not coincidentally) turned into mighty guns over the course of four months with Forrest Gump (my Southern-savant exercise bitchmaster).

Today, thankfully, there is no dreadful disease breathing down my neck. If I'm motivated by anything it's a fear that the last two pairs of pants I have that fit won't, and I can't bear the idea of buying new ones. Good news, I suppose, given where I've been, and compelling in a small way, but not enough to self-motivate.

I won't bore you with the grisly details of my myriad plans and the hacks I've been putting in place to make them realities. Not, anyway, until they're proven, and thus useful to someone else.

For now, know that I'm building in check-ups, meet-ups, phone calls and deadlines like mad in an effort to deadline myself into getting these things done. I make everything from trips to Encino to impulse calls from the grocery store in service of this new goddess of accountability.

And you? Well, perhaps you are the decisive sort who can, once decided, just do. I get that; I've done that.

But when the goals are big and multiple, when the path not so clear, when time is of the essence? I say call in reinforcements: running date; writing group; playreading circle. Be shameless. Be humble and shameless.

Whatever it takes. This is a big year for all of us, and most of us need help somewhere. I'm sorting out where I need mine, and will be, I'm guessing, straight on through the end of 2009.

No shame in that. The only shame is in giving up when you haven't yet called for help.

Who can you help? Who can help you?

When, finally, will you ask?


Image by joe m 500 via Flickr, used under a Creative Commons license.