As a full-time working mom with a side hustle, I don’t get it done without setting goals. And those goals have to be diverse, from making sure I’m taking care of myself to crossing off items on my to-do list.
But the thing about to-do lists and calendar items? They don’t talk back. You can’t check in with them and talk about your challenges and victories. They can’t give you the tough love you need or pull you back when you’re being too hard on yourself.
Enter the accountability group. Without realizing it, I’ve been in some form of an online accountability group for years. Back in college I frequented the Weight Watchers message boards. When I was a freelance writer, I connected with my “tribe” in a Facebook group. As I became a seasoned professional, I gravitated to groups and memberships of like-minded women.
I can’t believe it took me so long to admit it, but it really is the act of engaging with others that has contributed the most to my personal growth. This is huge for a self-described introvert who gravitates to alone time over communing with others.
The Surprising Problem With This
Then I became an accountability group junkie. After joining five of them, I realized I had a problem. I was achieving too much.
Seriously. As a member of two weight loss groups, two side hustling groups and one group of like-minded professionals, I had OD’d on accountability groups. And I had OD’d on side projects and weight loss goals.
Obsessed with achievement, I turned into a drag at home. If I wasn’t always doing something that carried me toward some goal, a feeling of disengagement would pull at me. And that’s no way to live.
Achievement is good, but you need pleasure too. You need to enjoy some Godiva chocolate once in awhile. And steal away some snuggles with your 1-year-old. You need to get addicted to a TV show with your husband. Isn’t there something in the middle?
Today, I’ve scaled back to only what I’ve needed. And it’s given me the clarity to do something I should have done years ago when I founded Adulting With ADHD: Launch an accountability group.
So I did, and it’s the best decision I’ve made in a long time. I’ve cut all of the other side projects in my life and am completely focused on the one thing I’ve enjoyed the most over my blogging journey: You.
Women who — just like me — are just trying to take care of themselves and find their place in the world. Except that we have this thing in our brains that can sometimes make it downright impossible to get clarity. We aren’t special snowflakes, everyone has some level of this, but in our cases, it can lead to some serious life impairment.