Being self-employed means your business entirely depends on what you do every day. There is no boss to reprimand or reward you, and no one else to rely on to get things done. Accordingly, every kind of self-employed person: entrepreneurs, freelancers, bootstrappers need help sticking to their commitments.  Chris and Jamie have found a path forward as accountability partners.

ChrisFirst Name: Chris
Sex: Male
Age: 34
Timezone: CST
Describe yourself primarily as: Entrepreneur
What area you’d like to improve: Health & Fitness
What habit you’d like to develop: Workout at Gym 

Goal in this area: Go to the gym every day at 5 am
Greatest weakness: I get distracted.
Greatest strength: I can get very productive.
How often would you like to be in contact: More than once per day, Once per day, Multiple days per week
Preferred mode of contact:
SMS, Email, Phone, In Person, Slack
Anything else you’d like your buddy to know: Ideally, I’d like to be going to bed at 9pm and getting up at 4:30am. I work at a creative agency as a product manager. I love startups, tech, people, and animals.

JamieFirst Name: Jamie
Sex: Female
Age: 37
Timezone: EST
Describe yourself primarily as: Entrepreneur
What area you’d like to improve: Health & Fitness
What habit you’d like to develop: Lose Weight 

Goal in this area: Be comfortable in a size 4.
Greatest weakness: I work a lot and know that working out makes me feel better but don’t do it.
Greatest strength: I can see the big picture – I am very motivated in business it is just not translating into my personal life. 
How often would you like to be in contact: More than once per day, Once per day
Preferred mode of contact:
SMS, Email, Phone, In Person, Whatsapp
Anything else you’d like your buddy to know: I work a lot, started my own business and run it alone. I need someone to hold me accountable and with decision fatigue that I have after long days of work and a long todo list. 


Enter Jamie and Chris

The term “accountability partner” isn’t commonly used. Where did you first hear about it, (or did you even hear it) and what made you think it might be a good idea for you?

JamieJamie: I was looking for an accountability coach but it seemed to take the point out of ‘accountability’ if you were paying for it. Also- I felt it needed to come from within – so I was googling and found your site.

ChrisChris: I don’t know where I first heard it, but I’ve led accountability groups and Mastermind Groups, I’ve had counselors and been a youth mentor, etc, so it’s been a term in my vocabulary for a while.

Where are you located?

JamieJamie: Miami, Florida.

 

ChrisChris: Huntsville, Alabama.


What had you been trying before that wasn’t working?

JamieJamie: I run my own business and make decisions day in and day out so usually by the time I get to ‘personal’ decisions my willpower is gone.

 

ChrisChris: Self-regulating.

 

Once you decided that finding someone to work with might be helpful where did you go? What was your plan to find someone?

JamieJamie: I asked my personal trainer, and also a few friends for their advice but after talking to them decided I wanted someone completely OUTSIDE my existing circle so that there would be no judgement or preconceived notions, someone I could be 100% honest with.

ChrisChris: I specifically searched for “accountability partner” because I was looking for a service exactly like GetMotivatedBuddies.

 

Did you have a plan in mind of how you would work with the person? Did you imagine the perfect scenario of a relationship?

JamieJamie: I envisioned mostly text communication- email is cluttered and calls, well they usually are at inopportune times so you miss them. Text worked best for both of us.

 

ChrisChris: I had personal goals and wanted to find someone with similar-enough goals who I could work with.

 

Once you joined GetMotivatedBuddies how long did it take you to match with one another, and what made you decide to accept your buddy?

JamieJamie: I matched with a few people that didn’t respond or clearly were not serious. One guy wanted a ‘strong black or Latina woman’ to motivate him. I turned him down right away 😛 Chris is a fellow entrepreneur so we really hit it off from the start.

ChrisChris: It took about 3 days to match with Jamie, which was quicker than I expected. I first matched with a guy who rejected me, and then hit it off with Jamie given that we’re both tech entrepreneurs, we’re similarly-aged, and we both have similar goals.

Once you matched what happened? How did you move forward?
Did you set up a system?
What kind of conversation did you have?

JamieJamie: We texted about what our goals were, what we wanted to achieve. I envisioned texting to work out in the mornings – we ended up doing morning and night, it’s worked out well. We also discussed what we wanted out of the relationship and what we didn’t want.  We opened the channel of communication from the start and I feel pretty comfortable telling him if I want something to change in the future because we set that expectation from the beginning.

ChrisChris: We started texting, introduced ourselves, discussed our goals, and then made a system. Our system is that we check-in every night before bed and every morning before our gym workouts. Doing so helps us remind each other to get to bed at a reasonable hour while also getting up early for a workout.

 

As you started to work together did you find you needed to change anything?

JamieJamie: After the first weekend we had to set a few ‘rules’ about if we were going out or going to be off schedule, etc. and how to handle that. Been smooth sailing ever since.

 

ChrisChris: I found I needed to create calendar reminders to follow up with her because I’m often still active around our 9pm check-in time.

 

How do you primarily communicate and how often?

JamieJamie: Twice a day, 6AM and 10PM

 

ChrisChris: We primarily communicate via text twice/day.

 

Do you feel the buddy partnership has helped? If so, how?

JamieJamie: Yes, I have someone that expects me to do something and holds me accountable if I don’t. I also feel like if he is texting me first every day then I need to step it up.

 

ChrisChris: Very much so. One thing that I appreciate is the relative anonymity in our relationship. We’re not trying to work together, get to know each other personally, date, network, etc—we’re trying to stick to our goals. We’re not friends who go easy on each other, we’re accountabilibuddies who hold each other accountable.

 

What are the pitfalls of this kind of relationship?

ChrisChris: Both people have to be committed to their goals in order for this to work. Both need to be self-starters who can create and follow their own system.

 

JamieJamie: You really have to make yourself tell the truth, since no one is there in person to tell if you are lying or not. But once you commit to that you realize it’s okay to make mistakes and that they are there to support you, not judge you.

 

What advice would you give other buddies who have started to work together to encourage a successful working partnership?

JamieJamie: You have to commit to it at the same level, otherwise someone is going to be carrying the weight.

 

ChrisChris: Establish a daily routine and stick to it. Avoid getting to know your buddy personally—keep it professional. Use calendar reminders, task management software, etc.

 

Anything else you want to say…just because you can?

ChrisChris: I’m excited to see how GMB develops! I’ve told all my friends about GMB and several of them now have accountabilibuddies of their own.

 

JamieJamie: Thanks for starting this program – pretty cool to meet a stranger, hundreds of miles away and enrich your life through the relationship.


2 Comments

Willy · September 18, 2018 at 4:35 pm

It was a nice read and got some good advices. But what I didn’t like it was he said to keep it professional and avoid getting to know that person. I mean it’s not like the other person is going to be your best friend but there is ni harm to know a little more of your partner… I would actually get bores easily if my only conversation was “Did you workout?” “Yes” “Ok, see you tomorrow”. Anyways everyone is different

    Michael G. · September 18, 2018 at 4:49 pm

    Yes, everyone is different. In the other interviews you can see some partners find getting to know one another extremely motivating and helpful. But what I think Chris is referring to is that the nature of this relationship is primarily focused around your shared goal, and that focus – helps keep you focused.

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