Updated: Nov 9
Take 100% Responsibility (no blaming, finger pointing)
Design with Ease
Responsibility Fuels Power.
Between the space of stimulus and response, there is a space. In that space is your power to choose your response. In your response is your growth and your freedom.”
This simple idea is one of the most powerful concepts for personal development and professional success.
It boils down to this. You can’t always choose the conditions of your life but you are always… always… able to choose your response to them. This means that while factors outside your control may have impacted the state of your life – your career/ business, health/ wellbeing/ stress levels, your marriage/family/relationships, your bank balance/finances… or lack thereof — no-one else is responsible for them.
So if there are areas of your life that you wouldn’t rate an A, it may well serve you to take a long honest look in the mirror and ask yourself what you have done or failed to do, that has contributed to the status quo and is stopping you from improving it.
You can’t fix what you don’t own. While it’s highly convenient (and often easily justifiable) to blame your lot on someone else — your lousy boss, lazy colleague, lying (former or current) partner, dysfunctional family/ parents, or your crappy genes, or even the government and banking chiefs — in the end, the bucks stops solely with you.
Yes, blaming others is easily justified. But it also takes the onus off you to do anything about it. But pointing the finger anywhere but at yourself is inadvertently giving away your power to other people (people who may or may not care the slightest about your happiness!)
Focus your energy on what expands possibilities
We human beings have an innate negativity bias that makes us predisposed to be Teflon for the positive experiences and Velcro for negative ones. That is, we are far more likely to dwell on what’s wrong or what’s missing or what should be better or should not have happened.
"It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.”
What’s happened before is done. Now go out and happen to life.
Embrace life’s curve balls (they’re coming anyway!)
A well-worn maxim in military circles is that no plan survives its first encounter with the enemy. The same is true for life. No matter how brilliant your plans or how adept you think you are at getting all your ducks lined up in a row, at some point your plans will go awry. The sooner you can embrace that life is not linear, that change is a given and that nothing is certain (bar death and taxes), the less stress you will feel and the more opportunities you can seize.
Train the brave (and don’t wait until you’re unafraid)
Too often we think we have to feel brave, fearless and courageous before we can make the change or take the chance toward what we most want. Unfortunately, courage doesn’t work this way. The only way to build the courage that you want is to start acting like you’ve got it.
Every time you act in the presence of fear, you dilute its power and amplify your own. So don’t let fear and self-doubt call the shots.
Too many of us spend too much of our one and only precious life trying to be someone we’re not, putting on our best face, trying to smooth out our rough edges and shore up our shortcomings in an effort to be the person we think we should be. Yet no matter how hard we try, it’s never enough. Well not for long anyway.
Unleashing our power and being the force for good that we are capable of being cannot flow from a place of deficiency and judgment. We turn on the fawcett to our power when we own our innate inadequacy (imperfection and all) and get off our own backs and embrace ourselves as the one-of-a-kind flawsome ‘human becomings’ that we are.
We are each born with our own unique blueprint of passion, personality, talent, strength and yes, weakness too. Living our best lives and fulfilling our unique potential doesn’t require us to get a perfect 10 on every measure. It requires no more than owning who you are (and who you are not!), embracing your humanity and drawing on your fallen moments as opportunities to blossom into the perfectly imperfect magnificence of who you have it within you to be… of who you’ve always been.
Therein lies your power.
May you use it to be the force for good the world needs you to be!