“You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today”
As Lincoln pointed out we cannot evade our responsibilities but sometimes we get tired of being accountable for all our actions. Today I am going to talk about how being responsible can free you up from undue worries and make life easier. I’ll take you through eight steps that will help make this possible.
Acknowledge that you and you alone are solely responsible for the choices you make in life- so stop playing the blame game. You are responsible for what you feel and think. You can choose to be miserable and withdraw or plaster a big wide smile on your face and get out there – studies have proven that even a fake smile starts a feel-good sensation going in your brain and that is contagious – you smile- others smile – soon everyone’s smiling and feeling good.
We need to work on the behaviour traits that will make us more personally responsible as we are held morally and legally accountable for our actions. You determine your own feelings about actions or events that may take place- yes even the negative ones. Find the good in them – setbacks make you strong – I should know I’ve been from boom to bust and back again – a number of times and have emerged stronger and more resilient and have learned an awful lot along the way.
1 Accept help
Don’t try and do it all alone. Professionals can help get you into the right frame of mind to accept your responsibilities without them seeming an onerous task. There are mentors out there to help you organize systems; accountants will help get financial affairs in order, relationship consultants will help get your marriage back on track. The more help you get the easier meeting your responsibilities become.
2 Develop a plan of action
Rather than giving in to doubt and fear as you lie awake at night rather use that energy to make a list of every single thing you are responsible for in your personal and work life – this list should be quite extensive! Then tick off the things you are coping with adequately. Make two lists from the remaining items – ones that without immediate attention could result in disaster and others that can go on the back burner for a bit. Then prioritize your immediate attention list and give yourself a time limit in which to set up systems to deal with these responsibilities.
3 Use positive affirmations
Many people have irrational fears and beliefs. Try to adopt a logical approach and figure out the reason you are holding these beliefs. They may step from the way you were raised or early experiences. Replace these with positive affirmations that you repeat daily. These affirmations should surround you – in your home, in the office, in your vehicle. The more you see and repeat them the more they become your core beliefs.
4 Reorganize your priorities and goals
What made sense in your twenties may not be as valid in your thirties and beyond. Reassess your direction and figure out what is most important to you. Try to make sure you are achieving a balance in your life. What makes people act irresponsibly is when they feel their life is unbalanced initiating a knee jerk reaction, which may have negative consequences. Work to counteract that by recognizing what is making you angry or unhappy and taking positive action.
5 Put yourself in charge
Eleanor Roosevelt’s famous quote 'No one can make you feel inferior without your consent,' is as true today as it was all those years ago. You are in charge of how you respond to people, actions and events. You are responsible for allowing them to affect you in a negative way or learning from the experiences and progressing to a more responsible life. Every time a person or event threatens to put you on a downer refuse to give permission – use your positive affirmations and all the other tools you have assembled to get you through.
6 Identify limiting beliefs
We are so used to our limiting beliefs we often find it difficult to identify them. They may have been passed on by family members, by teachers, the church and childhood friends. Because we have grown up with them we often do not question them. It may be a good idea to sit down with a mentor who will help you identify those limiting beliefs that are holding you back from taking responsibility for creating your ideal life.
7 Become independent
The more you develop positive self-affirming traits the less you are dependent on others for approval, acceptance and recognition. This enables a leader to act decisively instead of worrying about how others are going to react to what that leader knows is the right and responsible thing to do. People who lack independence are often fearful of making a decision or taking risks - being successful in business is all about taking calculated risks.
8 Take risks
Taking risks makes you grow and learn. Life can change for the better – if you keep doing what you have always done then don’t expect a different result. Be open to new possibilities. If you are not sure of a new development turn yourself into an expert by studying what is available online, go on courses to keep up with current trends and tap into the skills of specialists.
By being responsible you create lasting value in your life as your personal responsibility underlies everything you do and everything you create. You are taking into account the other stakeholders in your life and giving them permission to support you through your transparent and ethical behaviour.
To learn more about RESPONSIBILITY check out www.thevisionlabs.coworkshops and events.