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What Is Self-Accountability and Its Examples?

By Darren Finkelstein
By Darren Finkelstein

The Accountability Guy®

Home » Accountability » What Is Self-Accountability and Its Examples?
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Self-accountability is one of the most critical skills that one could ever acquire. It not only helps the individual in becoming a better person but also inspires everyone around them.

Self-accountability, also known as personal accountability, is a style of life in which you accept responsibility for your actions and life. It also involves learning from past events and mistakes.

But wait, this is not it; holding yourself accountable is more than a mere definition. It is a practice, a habit and a way of life that you can adapt if you know the true meaning.

Don’t worry, as you will find all the relevant information and answers to your question here. So, let’s buckle down and get started without further ado.

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What Is Self-Accountability?

If we go by the definition, then taking accountability means having the courage to accept and take responsibility for your actions. It is a practice that makes individuals better, more reliable and trustworthy leaders and people in general.

Imagine that you are a team leader and something goes wrong during the process of achieving the target because of a combined mistake. What would you do in such a scenario? Would you blame your team members and curse them for doing wrong? Or would you collect yourself and take responsibility for whatever has happened as a true leader?

The above questions are enough to instil a sense of what accountability is actually about.

What is not Self-Accountability?

There is a difference between being subservient and accountable. You must know what self-accountability isn’t in order to practice it properly. So, check out the following list for understanding self-accountability in a better way-

It isn't about never asking for help.

Self-accountability indeed entails the habit of doing things yourself without asking for help but not in every case. You must understand that not taking help where necessary can have considerable consequences, and you might even put yourself at risk.

In general, you shouldn’t ask for help only if you are capable and responsible for doing something.

It isn't about saying sorry all the time.

You must not lose your dignity and say sorry for things that you or your team hasn’t even done. It is okay to be flexible and take charge of your actions, but it is not okay to forget that it doesn’t take much time from being accountable and become a scapegoat.

It isn't about saying "yes" every time.

There might be multiple tasks that you are responsible for, but you should understand that you cannot do them all at once, so saying yes to every task isn’t going to help.

If you do not prioritize and suddenly put a lot on your plate, you might break down or get overwhelmed. So, take it easy and do what is necessary first.

Examples of Self-Accountability

Now that you know what self-accountability is let’s look at some examples for gaining more clarity-

Recognizing a problem

When you are at your workplace, you are responsible for all the roadblocks as well. So, if you want to take charge and make sure that any roadblock doesn’t hamper your company, you must recognize the problem. It involves analyzing the data and situations for predicting what can go wrong.

Bring Solutions

Once you have recognized what the problem or roadblock is, it is your responsibility to take the initiative of solving the problem.

This example is applicable even when you haven’t recognized the problem.

Reacting Responsibly

There might be times when you feel caught up or not the best version of yourself. And this might lead to poor judgements and decisions, which ultimately affects the company.

To prevent all this, you can leverage self-accountability in a creative way. Examine yourself, your work environment, and those around you honestly. It will help you find out what needs to change or what needs to be done.


You must know when you or another person is wrong and yet be kind enough to forgive. It will help you and your teammates in the long run.

Apologize Sincerely

If you realize you’ve made a mistake, don’t be scared to apologize. Others will learn from you if they realize that your apologies are genuine and not simply lip service.

Show Up

If you are frequently absent from work, you will never be valued at your company. People who take responsibility for the job arrive at work on time, if not ahead of schedule.

Summing It Up!

Self-accountability is a great skill to acquire, and it is undoubtedly an essential step toward becoming a better person and a leader. The sooner you practice and imbibe this skill in your life, the better it is.

Now that you know so much about self-accountability make sure to practice it regularly. Remember that it will take time, but persistent efforts will help you in sailing through.