The Power of Community

Those on the debt free journey with the Debt Free Divas know full well that we advocate partnership when cleaning up a financial fiasco. Partnership in the sense that members of the team keep one another motivated, accountable, and supported. That team can be two friends or an entire commune working towards a resolution. In theory, this concept is fantastic. Practically speaking, schedules may be harder to align as work, family duties, and – let’s be honest – play time can make it harder to connect consistently.

We’ve found the research (3 Steps to Phenomenal-ness). Addressing goals in groups leads to a 33% increased possibility that said goals will be achieved. Let’s review my latest group experience. Weight loss is a challenge for many. I’m no exception. Add in a rather ravenous pregnancy period and I have a mammoth hill ahead to climb. I’ve conquered this challenge before, but with two kiddos under two, my excess energy level left for exercise was limited. Enter an exercise accountability group. Of course, we didn’t refer to our weekly gathering as such. In hindsight, that’s exactly what it was. A group of friends meeting weekly for a brisk walk on the lake, a bit of gabbing, and a whole lot of spurring one another other on. Encouragement! The Power of Community Accountability Experiment

Photo credit: Inspired Results Group

After two months of walking, the goal morphed into running a 5K race. I am not a fan of running. Not at all. However, I’ve found running can be the shortest distance to shedding unwanted inches. Running is also budget friendly and a great excuse to get outdoors! Using a nifty (free) app: C25K, we’ve progressed to the cusp of running a 5K in 7 weeks. My first official attempt at running a complete 5K will be this Saturday! Focusing on a beneficial chore while working in community with others to reach a shared goal rocks! Some observations include:

  • I’m less likely to skip a session because someone is waiting. We’ve persisted through vacations, extended work days, and weather changes.
  • My partner shared that she runs further with a partner than she would have solo. Peer pressure can be a good thing.
  • Setting a sustainable pace helps us run further. I definitely run faster alone and run out of steam sooner. Running this way is less enjoyable. We may look like we’re out for a Sunday stroll, but I assure you we are indeed running.
  • Running solo is tough. Maybe it’s the boredom or the (slightly) faster pace. I’m not sure. I struggle mentally in a way that I don’t when running with a buddy.
  • It’s nice to celebrate incremental accomplishments with someone also in the trenches.

A weight loss challenge and dumping debt have plenty of similarities. They can both be onerous chores that ultimately lead to a healthier lifestyle. I bet we can apply the power of community to dumping debt. If you’d like to join my little experiment, please complete the following form by October 1. Let’s see if we can create something that revolutionizes dumping debt on the journey to financial freedom!

 

The Power of Community Accountability Experiment

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