By Michelle Miller
Many are burdened by the habit of avoiding responsibility, whether for themselves or for those to whom they are responsible.
While this tendency to ‘duck and dodge’ responsibility may seem like you are getting away with something, after a while, it slowly erodes your power within.
In the end, you become less and less of a person, not because you successfully deceived those around you, but more so because you continue to deceive yourself.
Your inner truth has a greater impact on who you believe you can become. The bigger truth here is the fact that you really can’t ‘duck’ life. The life within you sees and knows all. In essence, life is a fluid experience, waiting to be shaped, sculpted and created by you.
When you find the courage and willpower to take responsibility for your life, you are better able to develop the ability to create your life with courage. This is the power of responsibility.
Yes, it is true that with great power comes great responsibility, but even more so, with great responsibility comes great power.
Responsibility is an incredible source of power. I would venture to say that it is one of the most potent power sources. To take responsibility you muster the audacity to take control and take charge of the way you show up in the world.
Being responsible empowers you to meet life fearlessly, no matter the challenge. On the contrary, the avoidance of responsibility keeps you a prisoner of a distrustful self and a passenger in your own life.
People get so hung up on what ‘so and so’ thinks or what they will say. This being overly concerned about people’s opinions becomes a way of life of many. Yet, the opinion that most drive your habits and behaviours is really your opinion of yourself.
Learning to see yourself as being worthy enough to take responsibility for your life, gives you access to your unique power. You no longer lean outward but inward and from this vantage point, you get-up off that old wall of playing small. You recognise that you have the power to direct your life with purpose.
Taking responsibility is a function of elevated thinking. You live a more honest and dynamic life, growing internally not just externally.
So how can you access this power of responsibility?
It all comes down to your willpower. To change, improve, and grow you must have a burning desire of willpower to change. Nothing can change until you change.
The best place to begin is in the mirror. Ask yourself some bigger questions about your inner truth.
Be willing to look at those parts of yourself that may be a bit uncomfortable. They must be addressed if you are to express your best self.
In my journey to being more responsible, I learned early the power of self-reliance.
My mother taught to be responsible by doing more than I thought I was ‘supposed’ to do. Taking initiative and sacrificing my ‘now’ for later was a key lesson in my journey to responsibility.
As a leader, you have responsibility to others, whether you are a parent, teacher, employer, or like me, a ‘big sister’ – others are looking to you to lead.
In taking responsibility, I discovered my capacity to act responsibly in caring for my sisters and mother.
We each have this unlimited capacity to act responsibly but we must be willing.
At the time, I was only 19 years old and that single experience was my greatest life lesson. It taught me the power of responsibility, but the bigger lesson was learning that already had the power.
This is where the work begins, to know that you have the power to act responsibly, and you do. Stand on this knowing and unshackle yourself from the habit of ‘ducking’ responsibility. Nothing happens in your life without you; you are always the first cause.
Taking responsibility means letting go of those old crutches of excuses. Stop hobbling through life fearfully and instead use your power to hopscotch fearlessly.
Responsibility is the true way out of any challenge but only if you are willing to make a new agreement with yourself to live responsibly.
Ultimately, you are the gatekeeper of your life. Whatever resides inside your life, you alone gave the authorisation. The power of responsibility is a beautiful gift to live a purposeful, enriching life.
Leader to leader, make today the day that you contemplate the power of taking responsibility to design and live the life that you love.
What do you think?