Friday, 31 August 2007

Accountability Partners

I was reflecting on how I managed to get through the second sleeve of the steeked jacket in just over a fortnight, when the first one took months and it occured to me than other than the fact that I just knew what I was doing more the second time around, there was another big factor.

I had an accountability partner.

My good friend Tanya, she of A Barrister's Yarn, had what she christened her brown nemesis. That is, a man sized jumper she was knitting for her brother and she had a deadline coming up (this weekend) where she would be seeing him and wanted very much to hand it to him in person.

The thing was, she was bored with the project. It wasn't as tantalisingly fun as say, a lace scarf or a pair of socks. She needed motiviation.

Meanwhile, I was facing second sleeve syndrome and not at all inspired to keep going.

So we made a pact. Each day, we'd report in on how much we'd managed to do the day before and pretty soon we got into a very helpful pattern that was more than a little tinged with healthy competition between friends and a desire to avoid the shame of admitting to having done nothing at all.

The result was fantastic. She's handing over the brown jumper this weekend and I finished the second sleeve in what felt like the blink of an eye.

But what to do now? Tanya has no nemesis and I'm still facing another fortnight, at least, of adding extra length to the too-short body of my jacket. I figured I'd just keep plodding along by myself.

Enter Regenia! Some of you might remember Regenia as the kind knitter who donated a set of pretty antique pearl buttons for my purple mohair cardigan. She's from Tennessee, just by the by. Regenia contacted me saying she too had a big project with a looming deadline and would I like to have a new accountability partner.

Sure I would!

And so it began this week. Regenia has a shawl she's working on for a special night out and I've got my jacket.

I love this system. It's not scary pressure, to know that someone is waiting to hear a report on what I've achieved. But it's pressure all the same and I am a pressure-prompted kind of girl. It's also a really good way to get to know someone a bit better.

This might just be the key to making sure I reach my deadline with the jacket, which is still kind of fluid for a few reasons, but getting closer.

So thanks Regenia. I think this is gonna work well!