In his new book, Open, Craig Gross talks about what accountability means, what accountability looks like, and key components of an accountability relationship. A common thread through these components is time. Not only does a true, effective accountability relationship take intentional time out of your schedule, but the different elements of an accountability relationship also take time. 

Courage: Being open and sharing the most private aspects of your life with someone takes courage. Finding the courage to reveal your biggest secrets doesn’t happen overnight. It takes lots of prayer and time to reach the realization that you need to let some trusted friends in on this journey with you.

Right people: Once you find the courage to be open, you need to find the right person/people to be open with. This, too, takes prayer, discernment, and time. It takes time to find the people that will listen to you and encourage you to be your best.

Building the relationship: So you’ve found the select few that you are willing to be open with. It takes some time to get to the point where you can ask each other the uncomfortable questions. It takes time to be able to have the relationship where you can say the difficult things that need to be said.

Scheduled time: Being open with someone has to be intentional. It needs to be an item on your calendar. You can’t expect openness and accountability to happen if you don’t purposefully invest time into your accountability relationships. It also means you take the time to work on, think about, pray about, or do whatever you and your accountability partners determined needs to be done- it isn’t like those projects you wait to do until the night before. It’s an ongoing thing.

Being open is an investment, but, as with many things, the returns will be so worth it. If you’re willing to make the time to be open, make the time to read Open by Craig Gross.