Scientists and researchers call it the Hawthorne effect. Management at the Hawthorne Electric plant just outside of Chicago wanted to understand how they could make workers become more effective. Changes were made to the working conditions and then researchers measured the employees productivity after the changes. After every change the researchers noticed higher productivity levels followed by a return to the productivity levels prior to the change.
Turns out if a change is made and observed the act of observing the participants makes the change work. The Hawthorne effect is an observer effect. The observer effect is the fact that observing a situation or phenomenon necessarily changes it.
Quantum Physics has been dealing with the Observer effect for years. Here is an interesting interview about the observer effect and Quantum Physics.
My wife tells the kids that there are cameras everywhere they go. Skate park, cameras there, mall, McDonalds, the city park, cameras everywhere. She doesn’t do this to instill fear she does this because she knows that the observer effect works and she wants them on their best behavior.
My mom would tell me that God is always watching and my dad would tell me that you can never get away from yourself. Holding yourself accountable requires a pretty high amount of self awareness and pragmatism. My wife has often told me that I cannot expect the world to be as self aware as I am (maybe this was a compliment I think it was more of a be easier on people and set some lower expectations).
Someone is always observing and measuring us, maybe it is you and family members, and friends. It is definitely family members and friends but not always you and really I think it should be us measuring ourselves against ourselves.
My son ran for school and he would have his numbers for his 3 and 5 mile runs on printouts he would show me. Some of the lines had the letters PB on them. I asked him what the letters meant and he said Personal Best. Ourselves that is our best measure and the one we should all be using. Did we do better? Did we meet our goals? Are we improving?
You can and will get better, just be patient with your self and measure what you are doing and have done. If you just get 1 % better a day in about 1/3 of a year you will be 100 % better than when you started!