Manager's Tips and Tools

by Manager Development Services

Self-esteem Series (6 of 13) Taking Responsibility



#3  Taking Responsibility for Nurturing Oneself

There is no way to Happiness – Happiness is the way

If you get nothing else out of this book, get this…“No One is Coming.”

No one is coming to heal you.

– No one is coming to make you happy.

– No one is coming to give you the life you want.

– No one is coming to give you the fulfillment of your hopes, your dreams, or your wishes.

When I first heard this – I was angry.

“You mean I’ve waited all my life to win the lotto or have my ship come in or for that one perfect person to walk into my life and then everything will be wonderful– and it’s not going to happen?”

Then I was told, “No, it’s not.  But you’ve had the power to make it happen within you all along.  You just give it away.”

Then, for the first time in fifty years, I realized – Hey, this is MY life.  I only have this one!  This isn’t practice!  This is it!  What do I want out of it?  I haven’t been all that thrilled with the way it’s been going so far.  Maybe I should get serious about it!

As human beings, we are condemned to make choices.  We make thousands of choices every day – some healthy, some unhealthy.  The choices we make that are unhealthy, that cause consequences and pain in our lives, we learn at a very young age to blame on someone or something else.  The more we react to our “wants” without weighing the consequences, the more we blame others for negative consequences and the more we become endured to an “avoidance of responsibility.”  This dynamic becomes a self-defeating behavioral pattern.  The frightening thing about this pattern is that it is unconscious and second nature.  Because it is a “behavior,” we don’t think about it and often don’t even realize we’re performing it (ever drive home from work and not remember the drive home?).

By blaming the consequences of our actions on others or circumstance, we unwittingly begin living as victims.  As victims, our destiny becomes dictated by the whim, actions, and opinions of others.  Eventually, we find ourselves living in “victimhood.”  In other words, I live in a state in which I believe, feel, and act as though I have no power whatsoever to affect my environment – as though I have no power to change anything about my life.  In other words, I give my power away to outside forces.

This power I speak of is innate in every human being.  Unfortunately, most of us give it away to people who don’t ask for it, don’t necessarily want, and most of the time, don’t even know they have it.  You make me happy.  You make me mad.  You make me sad.  I’ve just unwittingly given you one hell of a lot of power over me.

By taking responsibility for my life, I finally stop blaming my troubles on everyone and everything else.  I reclaim power over my life.  I actually make a conscious choice to change my environment and my destiny.  I understand that only I am responsible for the achievement of my desires.  No one owes me the fulfillment of my wishes.  Only I am responsible for my choices and actions (remember, blame is for children in the sandbox).  Only I am responsible for my behavior and for how I prioritize my time.  Then I realized that only I am responsible for my personal happiness – no one else.  I can’t find happiness out there, happiness comes from within.

Today, I choose to respond – not react.  Today, I choose the values and the principles I want to live by and make a commitment to ME!  I agree with myself to honor my values and principles by making my daily behavior congruent with them.  I alone am responsible for raising my self-esteem.  It’s time I begin taking care of myself as I would someone I care deeply for.

This is empowering.   It places my life back into MY hands.

People collect bricks over their lifetime – a little brick of resentment over this incident, a little brick of fear over that situation, a bigger brick of anger because of this, a giant brick of regret over that, a brick of shame, a brick of guilt, and so on.  We don’t mean to collect these bricks and God knows we don’t want them.  But the truth is: we go through life filling our sack with these bricks until our backs are bowed and bent from the weight and still we refuse to give them up – to set them down.  Sadly, most of the bricks we carry aren’t even ours to carry – they belong to someone else.  But because we collect, we’re quick to scoop them up and put them in our sack.

Here’s a thought:

Let others carry their own bricks

By carrying my bricks and letting others carry their own, I accept responsibility for my choices and the power I retain and I gain a blessed freedom – freedom to pursue my own goals, my dreams, and my passion without being controlled or derailed by others. I assume responsibility for my life and become willing to explore my potential.  I define my goals – my destiny.  I define me.

Three powerful tools for “Taking Responsibility for Nurturing Self” is:  What Do I Want for My Life? What Do I Want to Do? / What is the Healthy Thing to Do? The Priority List.

NOTE: Manager Development Services’ Blog is intended to educate and give “food for thought” that will enhance a person’s personal and professional lives.  You can find our Self-esteem Series in either our text or our e-learning course titled, “Becoming Master of Your Destiny.”

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April 29, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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