Taking responsibility is a state of mind. It occurs when we own our decisions and actions, and become pro-active about the things we must do in order to fulfill our dreams. Self-responsibility isn't for the faint a heart, or for those with low self-esteem. It's not for those whose value, and self-worth is conditional, or whose emotions are always in play. Self-responsibility is vital to a fulfilled life. Because when we stop accusing, blaming, and complaining, we then get on with life. We recognize what we must do, and do it.
So how can we create this state of mind? Here are some markers to the self-responsible person. They are proactive. They continuously question and learn. They first identify and then live their values. They take deliberate decisions. They initiate action and enthusiastically pursue their goals in life. They bounce back from disappointments. They're aware of their resources, and strengths. They make bold decisions and follow through. They hold themselves accountable, and also allow others to hold them accountable. They are socially responsible.
Self-responsibility can be described as the practice of being responsible for the results we want. Not hoping, or demanding that someone else will 'do' something while we sit on the sidelines and observe. It's through self-responsibility that we attain personal power. And if the key issue is being accountable for the results we want. How then do we do that? How do we develop responsibility for our thoughts, our choices, and our actions?
The answer lies in a deep seated belief that we can make a difference. That we can always do something, that there is always some action we can take. And that we can trust our powers of mind, emotion, speech, and behaviour to navigate our way through life. It's a state of mind where we trust in ourselves and our ability to figure it out. Knowing we can acquire the necessary knowledge, we can develop whatever skills we require, and we can make life happen. As we develop and commit ourselves to the results we want, then self-responsibility is simple and profound. It's about manifesting all that we are capable of experiencing, becoming, having, feeling, thinking, choosing, giving, and contributing.
When our thoughts are healthy, appropriate, and empowering, we then often have peak experiences. And we all have these from time to time. Those who are able to attain this state, step into a situation where they can completely access their full resources. We recognize these people as the experts, the masters of some art, craft, skill, or science. When we relate meaning and performance to this state it reveals a pathway for unleashing our potential. Whenever we act without reflecting on meaning or connecting with our highest calling, the less motivation we will have and the less effective we will be.
We are all responsible for living our own life. No one can do this for us. Believing in entitlement, that the world owes you, the government owes you, your family owes you, and playing your life 'small' will sabotage your success. To unleash our potential each of us has to accept, acknowledge, and act on our own inner powers. Only then can we take the initiative to discover our strengths and weaknesses and take action to discover what makes us most fully ourselves. In this we are seeking how we can best express our unique contributions and through that create a successful life, make a significant difference, and leave a meaningful legacy.
Here's your critical thinking exercise for this week. Complete this sentence stem and generate at least ten endings. "If I were to take full responsibility for making my dreams and goals come true, I would...."
Don't worry about whether the endings you write are positive or negative, that's not the point of the exercise. The point is to increase awareness. It is to download the responses from your non-conscious mind about self-responsibility. Doing this will then allow you to decide which of the responses best serve you. You can simply keep and reflect on the best and discard the rest.