I have not conducted a formal study on the biggest challenges that our society faces today, but I think even a moderately observant person would agree that among the top issues is that of responsibility. I believe that the blame game has become an epidemic in our nation. One needs only to turn on the news on any given day and listen, I mean truly listen to what is being said. It seems everyone is blaming everyone else and everything else for the ills facing us today. Mothers of criminals blaming the police for their adult children being killed in a police chase. You have anti-gun people blaming gun manufacturers for violence. Republicans blame democrats and democrats blaming republicans for everything that is wrong in our nation. And the list goes on almost without end!
How often do you see this mindset creeping into your own neighborhood or circle of acquaintances? It is awful! Do you know why it is so awful? The answer may surprise you. It comes down to a matter of control. You see, if we as individuals engage in attitudes of personal responsibility then the control for change of the things we do not like or approve of lie with us. The keys of change are in our own hands and we can determine proper adjustments in our course that will lead to different outcomes, more positive outcomes. Conversely, if we do not walk in personal responsibility then we hand over control to someone else or some other power, authority or ruling body. When we give up the keys to change, we are stuck in a perpetual rut, a rut of our own making.
This is what happens when we want to lay claim to the responsibility when things go right only. It is easy to pat ourselves on the back when we succeed. It feels good to cue people in to the one responsible for all the obvious good in our life. Oh how we love to feed the monster of pride! When the outcomes of our own decisions are not the desired or intended outcomes we tend to run and hide and point our fingers as a societal norm. As long as we do this, we are essentially saying the control is over there; I’m helpless and a victim, there is nothing I can do. How does that feel? No wonder there is so much angst and tension in our nation today, we have collectively raised a generation of helpless, powerless victims who are angry and tired of being victims. The trouble is that everything they read, hear and listen to through the media pats them on the back and reinforces them in their unenviable position. Only when the message gets out that the fix is to stop blaming others, take responsibility and therefore take control over their lives and future and begin to make choices and decisions that will lead to better outcomes.
The power of choice and the power of a decision in the end is the most powerful tool we as individuals have in forging the life we say we desire. Who are you going to give the power to in your life? Great leaders are not great blame givers, they are great responsibility takers. Take the responsibility for your own life, make the best choices you can, follow through on those choices with appropriate action and reap the future you desire!