Six-Year-Old Accountability Partner

Our youngest is extremely verbal. He listens, remembers, and repeats. He thinks about things a lot. He asks questions and when we’re not expecting it, our own words will come back to us via his sweet, thoughtful, six-year-old voice. And when we state our intentions and commitments out loud, we’re sure to be held accountable:”But, Mom, didn’t you say you wanted to spend less so that you can save for another mosquito net?”"Wait! We forgot to pray for the people of Bangladesh!”"Are we going to support a child through Compassion International soon?”"Have you read the psalms for today?”"Here’s the Bible story book. We just read about Saul. What’s next?”"It’s Saturday–didn’t you say you’d clip my fingernails every Saturday morning?”This can be a little annoying when I’m “caught,” when I haven’t followed through. But I think that’s the point of having an accountability partner:

  • to help me hold to the things I resolve to do;
  • or, to remind me to stop doing the things that I don’t want to do.

I realized that The Boy’s super-verbal personality is a gift. He can remind me to follow-through with things and be true to my word.Sometimes it happens naturally, because he listens to everything I say and simply asks out of curiosity if I’m doing what I said I’d be doing.Sometimes, however, I can be more intentional and actually ask him to bring it up. “I’m going to try to memorize this passage of Scripture. Can you ask me to repeat it to you later?”He agrees to it. And he does ask later.When he’s able to type, I’m thinking I can set him up with a website so that he can start his own accountability ministry.In the meantime, I get to benefit most of all. A simple thing he’s helped with lately is reminding me of my blog commitments:”It’s Sunday night, Mama–you need to write your Monday FunDay post!” or “It’s Tuesday. What are you going to write for Works For Me Wednesday?”So, when I need some accountability, I just ask my most verbal child for help. He may only be six years old, but it works for me.Before you go, feel free to browse my previously published WFMW posts, or return to Rocks In My Dryer for more great ideas.

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  • Comments

    1. That’s exactly why my 5-year-old and I bought a new scale after watching a bit of the Biggest Loser.

      He was so intrigued by the weight loss numbers that I knew he’d be an unwitting accountability partner for me.

      Mom, have you weighed yourself this week?

      Mom, do you want me to get the chart so you can see if you lost anything?

      Mom, you only lost one pound. You better not eat that cookie.

      Hmmm…

    2. How about this, from my three-year-old:

      “Mom, you’re talking on your cell phone” (while driving).

      “Yes. Why?”

      “I thought you said people who talk on the phone while they’re driving are idiots?”

      How’s that for accountability?

    3. OK, your son and my six-year-old son would be fast friends.

      At home group, the folks will go around the room and we’ll talk about the chapters we read for the week. Most will say, “Didn’t get around to reading.”

      But me?

      Got ‘em all read. Because if I Don’t Read My Bible Every Morning, the Six-Year-Old Accountability Patrol writes me a ticket.

      (I think mostly he’s just trying to postpone his own unpleasant tasks–like doing school.)

      But hey. It works.

    4. I have one too – he’ll be six on March 1st. He also likes to be sure we are not going to get lost when we’re in the car. If we take an unexpected turn, watch out! :-)

    5. I already see these traits in my 3 year old little boy – I can only imagine how much better his skills will be in a few more years.

    6. Wow, that’s incredible! Most 6 year olds are a little too self-centered to be remembering others’ commitments. He sounds like quite the Jiminy Cricket, LOL!

    7. Aw, thats so great Ann ! My oldest is like that….. and it can be annoying at times for me but its one of those blessings in disguise. I just think that it’s great that he is 6 and already doing it. He sounds so smart! I know you are proud!

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