The Power of Accountability
Having a partner work on something with you can bring power and motivation. You can cheer each other on when the going gets tough. You can celebrate when you reach success.
This is no different when it comes to finances. Whether you are paying off debt or working hard to save up for something, having an accountability partner can help take your goal to the next level.
Have you ever stood in a store questioning a purchase? Have you bought an item that cost too much and regretted it afterwards?
I’d say that I’m pretty reasonable and practical most of the time. However, I came across this online business one night. I was probably sleep deprived and looking for a quicker and better way to make some money. I was working in a factory job that I really didn’t like and was renting a room in a house of girls. I’m a dreamer so I had all these great plans but minimal finances to get me there.
From what I can remember, it was a website that I would own and be a broker for another company by selling their products. I had to pay $500 upfront and they “guaranteed” that I would make it all back within the first couple of months if I worked hard.
I signed up and went to bed. I woke up the next morning with complete buyers’ remorse. What was I thinking? I never spent that much money without thinking anything through before. I barely even had that much money in my account.
Thankfully they had a 24-hour clause. I was able to cancel the plan, though not without a lot of grief and badgering from the company.
When you put an accountability partner in place, you think twice before making a purchase because you know you’re going to have to explain yourself afterwards.
For married couples, your spouse is your accountability. This helps form better communication in your marriage. It teaches you to work together as a team. It keeps you honest. It shouldn’t be “I told you so” lessons. It should be coaching one another and cheering each other on to make the right choices.
If you’re not married, choose a good friend that you trust. Have them do the budgets with you once a month so they know what they are holding you accountable to. You are an adult and should be able to decide where your money is going. But there’s always that kid in us that has those “But, I want it!” moments. This is when you should call up your friend and ask if your impending purchase is wise or not. They can either give you peace of mind or help you have the will-power to walk away.
Having a partner help you through this is exciting. It is motivating. It can help you learn the habit of making wiser choices and thus help you to save more. When you see the victory pay off for the things you’re striving for, it’ll make it all worth it.
Just as we need motivation to exercise and eat right, we also need it to help take back control of our finances. The more you practice this, the more your finances and wisdom will grow.