“Incredible change happens in your life when you decide to take control of what you do have power over instead of craving control over what you don’t.” ~ Steve Maraboli, Internet Radio Commentator & Author
Imagine yourself driving down the street and a person in a fancy car cuts you off. This is something, if you are driving, you probably have experienced at one time or another. You probably start wondering things like, ‘What’s that person’s problem,’ ‘Why do they think they’re better than us,’ etc. — or maybe you are thinking bad thoughts, cussing, or dreaming of revenge. Now, imagine that person is a doctor on the way to the hospital to work on a life-threatening surgery for one of your close family members. This might make you think about the same situation, differently.
We are all confronted with day-to-day decisions. Some of these decisions are within our control, some are within our influences, and some our outside our control, entirely. Why is it we feel the need to blame others for what is happening to us? Is it a way we build ourselves up — by tearing someone else down? What are the things that we are responsible for?
Being a middle child, it was easy for me to think I had been mistreated. I had an older brother who got away with everything, and I had the younger brother who was spoiled rotten (or so I thought). It was easy to me when I was getting into trouble to quickly divert my parents and say, ‘Well, Paul did it.’ Was it really Paul’s responsibility for my actions? (I seemed to think so..)…
Ultimately, my parents learned through the school of hard knocks how to raise three boys, and they did a fantastic job. I quickly realized (with lots of mentoring from my parents) that it wasn’t my brothers or my situation that happened, that was my demise — it was how I reacted to everything. I found that my so called ‘tough life’ wasn’t nearly as tough as I thought.
Many years later, the curse that our parents cast on us comes true…now, it is my turn to mentor my children on how to take responsibility for their actions. I know when speaking with them the first thing out of their mouths will be a deflection of responsibility. They will say, ‘Well, Samantha did it,’ or, ‘It’s not fair,’ or, ‘You didn’t tell me that.’ With teenagers going through this, it is important to let them know it is not the school system, it is not your sibling or friends, it is they who needs to take responsibility for their actions.
There is a Bible verse that helps us connect this to ourselves. In Matthew 7:5 it talks about: ‘First, remove the beam out of your own eye, and then you can see clearly to remove the speck out of your brother’s eye.’ Basically, it is saying — is easy to blame your environment as the cause of why you are not making your commitments.
So… how do we move forward? First, by having NO EXCUSES for the things that are going on in our world. Next we stop playing the BLAME GAME. We know there are things that we can’t control — like the weather, economy, acts of God. But what about the things we can control, like how we deal with situations, how we rearrange our day to make up for the loss of time, how we can influence the decision makers in our lives. Many of the choices we make will determine how we grow as people. Many of the choices we make will determine if we can reach our goals. Perception becomes reality because we allow it to become that way. Like in the car story I led with, our perception put a whole different spin on the situation. It is our choice on how we handle it.
My experience has helped me get to where I am today and I had so many good mentors. I would not be in this position if it wasn’t for all of them taking the time and helping me to take extreme ownership for myself. I hope that you are able to take away some things I learned, for yourself. The bottom line is, if our company has issues, it starts with me.
Come help me change the world!