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Accountability: the foundation of life

So yesterday my kids ask me what the single most important thing in life is that I want them to learn.

Single most? I had a few, but they wanted the SINGLE MOST.

Single most for me meant a yardstick against which they can measure all their choices, their decisions, their progress.

Single most should be how they determine if they are living a good life.

Then I thought that the single most catalytic driver of people’s cognitive and character is formation.

After thinking about it a while, I told my kids that I think it is accountability. A good choice or decision is the one you will be accountable for. A good life is the one that you are accountable for how you use your time or resources.

They looked at me with puzzlement. But what about love, my 11-year-old girl asked. Love is an expression of how you use your time and resources, but accountability is what gives love its foundation. This is why on Judgment Day we will be held accountable for how we used our time and resources, I responded. You wanted the SINGLE MOST, I told them.

Here is the thing… I have learnt that the health of relationships in the history of humankind stands and falls on the degree of mutual accountability. The dividing line between successful and flailing countries and institutions, is the degree of accountability of their leaders.

So, I’m persuaded that accountability should be the most valued social capital.

As a male, I was raised with little accountability for my time or my resources. I only had to account for attending school and coming home before it was dark. Otherwise, what I did with my time was my business. Consequently, when I first walked into marriage, I was a cognitive disaster. I had no capability of accountability. My wife had to endure a painful 10 years of me having to develop accountability cognitive muscles.

The bottom line is you can tell the future of a man by his capability to be accountable for his time and resources

Now we get it, they responded after my long rambling. That is why you want us to tell you what we have been up to even on weekends.

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