Recently, my kids and I were talking about the show “The Biggest Loser”. There was a commercial clip on showing Jillian screaming at one of the contestants. I said, “wow she seems so mean, how can that be motivating.” I was sure my children would agree with me (since they are forever telling me I’m a yeller, and it definitely isn’t motivating for them). But, yet again, my kids surprised me.
My daughter said, “Mom what she is doing is changing their lives. She is helping them get better for their kids and that is a good thing….you just yell about homework and stuff. Totally different!” Matt said, “having to answer to someone all the time is good for you when you are trying to change something about yourself.” And while I wanted to tell them that cleaning their room or doing homework, or even being true to yourself are also good ways to change something about yourself…But I thought better of it!
It did get me thinking, however, is being accountable for our own actions and being true to ourselves the same thing?. For example, I was on Facebook the other day….just roaming through to see what people (“friends”) have posted…I like to go on a few times a week and check-in. There are always the same 3 “friends” that post 20x times a day. No exaggeration…If I were being true to myself, I would send them a message saying, “99% of the stuff you say is absolute drivel. Why do I need to hear that your dog is tired, or you were tired after taking her for a walk, or that I should be Happy because it is Sunday, Bitches!” Really, what is the purpose of that? But, I am accountable for these words, and I realize they seem harsh and uncalled for (though true).
These Facebook dwellers live their private life in this public venue but instead of being angry at them, I should feel more sympathetic towards them…I guess it is a modern day depiction of Shakespeare’s soliloquy in Macbeth…
…Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury
Signifying nothing. — Macbeth (Act 5, Scene 5, lines 17-28)
Accountability is something I struggle with. I believe it has a much-needed place in our daily lives, but often gets over looked. Should we be true to our self or accountable to others? Are they mutually exclusive? In being true to myself as of late, I realize that I need to be more accountable to others for things. Which brings me to my latest project. And back to The Biggest Loser for a second. Since being sick, I have struggled with my weight. And weekly I became more and more unhappy with the fact that as disgusted with my weight problems as I am, I have no one to blame but myself. I have avoided the gym, I had given up on “healthy eating”, and I had found every possible excuse to let myself get this way. I need to be accountable for that if not to myself then to someone I believe can help me. So I have joined a group of 28 others on this journey. I officially start Monday, but I am getting myself ready this week. For the next 8 weeks, I have to answer to 7 other team members’ about what I eat, and how many times I work out, and how hard I work out and yes, even what I weigh. I need to prove weekly that I am committed to this and to the team. There are 4 teams pitted against each other, and I need to pull my weight (metaphorically and physically). …And while this is not the televised version, the benefits can only make me feel like a star.
So I have chosen to use my accountability for Good instead of Evil…Personal growth instead of Public ridicule…I will keep you all filled in. And while my blog may appear on Facebook….My weight never will!
Go team Black….