I’m an “Obliger”

man wearing black and white stripe shirt looking at white printer papers on the wall
Photo by Startup Stock Photos on Pexels.com

They’re usually cheesy, but who doesn’t love a good personality test? I’ve taken the Myers-Briggs and am intrigued by the Enneagram (but it’s way too much a commitment to figure out), but one simple, short personality test that has served me really well is Gretchen Rubin’s four tendencies.

Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project and The Four Tendencies, posits that there are four kinds of people:

  1. Upholders
  2. Obligers
  3. Questioners
  4. Rebels

And even before taking the quiz, I knew it to the core of my being: I’m an Obliger. (The quiz confirmed this.)

If I say I want to do something, it’s not likely to happen. But if somebody is counting on me to do that thing? It gets done, son.

That’s a large part of why I’m blogging this year: sure, nobody’s looking over my shoulder or waiting for me to submit posts. But just by making it public–knowing that somebody could notice if I wasn’t posting every weekday–I feel accountable to hold myself to that goal. Otherwise, I probably wouldn’t write a thing this year.

Case in point: I lasted a little over a week following my food plan. I felt better, both physically and mentally. I recognized moments when I would run to food for a dopamine hit rather than to God in prayer. Food still feels better because prayer doesn’t light up the brain the same way, but it’s better.

But then my Thursday Morning Mama Meeting came up, and I deviated from the plan…and I kept deviating. It’s not the same kind of needy eating, but the benefits have evaporated and I miss them. There were definitely digestive benefits, and I lost a little weight. Food wasn’t on my mind all day long because I already knew what I would eat.

So is my need for outside accountability weakness? Yes! But Christ’s power is made perfect in my weakness (2 Cor. 12:9). The world may call it weakness, but we know that it is sanctifying, the means through which God draws us to one another, praying and watching as God sloughs off our rough spots.

What does accountability look like in your life? How do you find it helpful?

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