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What Is Personal Accountability?

By Darren Finkelstein
By Darren Finkelstein

The Accountability Guy®

Home » Holding yourself accountable » What Is Personal Accountability?
Personal accountability

Why is personal accountability so important?

Are you in the habit of taking responsibility for your own actions or holding yourself accountable for what happens in your life? People often put the blame for their failures on other people or circumstances. What they forget is that the reason for failure is within them.

Personal accountability is when you hold yourself responsible for the actions you take in your life. Whether the results for decisions are good or bad, you need to understand where your fault lies. It is a commitment and mindset that creates the first step towards a successful life.

Workplaces need to create accountability among their workers to ensure a better work-life balance. When people start understanding that what is happening to them is their actions, they start to fare better in life.

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What Is Personal Accountability?

Personal accountability is a belief where you make yourself responsible for anything that happens in your life. It is an approach of taking control of your life and not letting external circumstances affect your situation.

You will not blame other people when anything bad happens to your life. Similarly, no one else can credit for the good things in your life. When bad circumstances arrive, you will do the best thing possible to get over them.

Personal accountability is not an easy task and would require full commitment from your end. This is a regular practice that you need to ensure takes place in all situations. Personal accountability also helps in biding trust among people and smoothens your workplace relationships.

Essential Factors Related To Personal Accountability

To lead a successful life, you will need to consider certain factors directly related to personal accountability.

Failure is a part of life, and you cannot avoid it no matter how good you are at your job. However, the main thing is to come back each time you have failed. If you are disheartened or de-motivated by your failures, you cannot reach where you want.

Personally accountable people are also resilient in their life. They may be upset with their failures but does not let that failure take control of their life. Instead, they spend very little time mopping over their loss and bounce back to work upon their mistakes.


Personal accountability is directly proportional to ownership. When you have ownership of your life, you can embrace both the positive and negative aspects. You know that there is no other person or situation that can take control of your life.

When it comes to your employees, you need to teach them to accept criticisms even if they are harsh. Working on this feedbacks and criticisms will help people advance in life. As they improve their work quality, they will receive more appreciation and have a happier environment at work.


Accountable people will always continue to learn from their mistakes and never term them as failures. When something wrong happens, it is always because one step has been taken the wrong way. Understating this wrong step will help you rectify it in the future.

Rather than blaming external factors, it is better to focus on what went wrong. Being a victim will never do anything good for your life. The road to success will always be filled with bumps, but you need to learn to enjoy it in your own way.

Ways to Enhance Personal Accountability

No one is born with personal accountability; rather, people learn as they grow up. There are some basic ways that you can start being accountable in your life.

Understand Your Role

Whether it is in your personal life or professional life, you need to know your responsibilities. You cannot be personally accountable if you are unaware of what you need to know.

Once you understand your role, you know that anything that goes wrong in this aspect is your responsibility.

Never Lie

Lying to yourself is worse than lying to others. You can achieve the first step to personal accountability if you are truthful to yourself and others.

Even if the truth is difficult and can land you in trouble, do not keep it to yourself. Once the truth is out, you can work hard to rectify your mistakes.

Be Apologetic

Apologizing for your mistakes does not make you a small person. It is a good way of letting people know that you take responsibility for your mistake and are willing to work on that.

Keep all your focus on amending the mistake and ensuring that the situation becomes right. Apologizing also helps you and the others related to this move on and think about what is ahead.


Personal accountability is a powerful weapon using which you can overcome any problem. This is a regular practice that you need to adapt to in your daily life. Understand your good and bad actions and hold yourself accountable.

The more you focus on personal accountability, the more you can do great things in life. Slowly you will see that no one or no circumstances can create hindrance in your path to success.