What does it mean to be personally responsible? How do we take ownership of our choices? I believe it involves assessing our strengths, weaknesses, wants and needs. And understand that we invite consequences based on our actions.
We are bombarded with choices from the time we open our eyes in the morning until the time we close our eyes at night.
• I could get out of bed now and start that exercise regimen… or sleep another 30 minutes.
• Do I want cereal this morning… or scrambled eggs?
• Should I meet Sue for drinks after work… or go grocery shopping?
Our lives become the sum of the choices we make. I hate to admit this, but until recently I didn't really 'own' my choices. As a single mom most of my early adult life, I operated on autopilot to care for my daughter and myself. I had responsibilities and made choices every day, of course. What I didn't do was take the time to consider them and make decisions that would benefit ME. I was used to taking care of everyone else. Personal responsibility was not on my radar. I have since learned that responsibility for myself includes thinking about my choices and how to meet my needs and bless others.
Jake Lawson from Livestrong.com offers several tips on personal responsibility:
• Refute irrational beliefs and overcome fears
• Affirm yourself positively
• Recognize that you are the sole determinant of the choices you make
Click here to read more.
Fear is a huge obstacle in taking personal responsibility. Fear keeps many of us from reaching our full potential. We often miss out on opportunities because we are afraid of change. As the saying goes, the only constant in life is change. I challenge you to try something new. Start small. Volunteer for that non-profit you support. Take guitar lessons. The point is to step out of your comfort zone. Nobody can do this for you.
Many of us also blame others for our circumstances. This keeps us from owning our choices. We blame our family: "My dad said I'd never amount to anything." Our boss: "She doesn't appreciate what I do anyway." We take shortcuts and don’t try. As adults, we must let go of limiting thoughts and any tendency to blame others. We should strive to develop positive thoughts and cultivate an "I can" attitude. "The longest journey starts with the first step."*
Understanding why you do what you do could help you as you move forward in this life journey. A helpful resource is the Color Code - a tool designed to identify your core motive, and make choices more clear. Click here to take the personality assessment.
I encourage you to continue thinking about personal responsibility as you evaluate your strengths and limitations. Be honest with yourself. Let go of fear. And trust that you are right where you're supposed to be – today. Tomorrow looks even better.
*Ancient Chinese proverb
Kellie Williams, is a certified Color Code trainer and is actively on the path to self knowledge.