Having studied and worked alongside a multitude of high achievers and those that are successful in their chosen field it is evident that the person that takes full ownership of their thoughts, feelings, decisions and actions come out top in the game of life while those that fail to do so aimlessly play the blame game instead.

Personal responsibility is the cornerstone of personal development and simply put, the more you embrace this, the more you will grow as a leader, as a winner and as a human. The first step of personal responsibility is to be aware of the universal law of cause and effect described by Ralph Waldo Emerson as the “law of laws” due to the irrefutable fact that for every action there is an equal and opposite re-action. A far-reaching ripple effect on circumstances seen as consequences by those that refuse to take responsibility and as results by those that do.

“Shallow men believe in luck, strong men believe in cause and effect” Ralph Waldo Emerson

This law of cause and effect can be seen everywhere we look whether that’s in the interconnectedness of nature or hidden in plain sight among history books and ancient or spiritual texts. In fact, every philosophy and religion stressed the importance of the law of laws. The Bible eloquently described it “as you sow, so shall you reap.” It’s not just the Bible that speaks of reaping the fruits of your labour, the eastern philosophies including Buddhism and Hinduism refer to the law of cause and effect as “Karma”

Karma, a Sanskrit word meaning action gives us an opportunity to reveal how taking responsibility of your actions has a direct impact on the quality of your results in life, whether that’s your health, finances, relationships, career or personal growth. Quite simply put, if you want to improve or develop one of these key areas of life you need to improve your current actions or habits, how do we do that you way ask? By using the ability to respond differently to our current circumstances. Responsibility is the ability to respond.

For example, if you want to lose weight, and improve your physical fitness then you must take healthier actions and develop healthier habits in alignment with a healthier version of you i.e eating more nutritious food and exercising more frequently. I’m sure you will agree with this concept as its very simple when you zoom out and we know that nothing changes if nothing changes. If you agree with this then you must at least explore the fact that the current state of your health is a direct correlation of your actions and habits up until this point. Can you now see the significance of personal responsibility? The same is true for you finances, your marriage, your relationship with your children, your business and so on. Take ownership and be the victor (cause) or forever remain the victim. (effect)

How do the above statements make you feel? Do they test you? Do they make you feel uncomfortable? Good, they should. Taking full responsibility is not for the weak, but it is for the successful.

Unfortunately, we still have a culture in the modern world of seeking comfort over growth. It appears easier to find an excuse, rather than find the courage to make decisions and take improved actions.

The problem with sacrificing your personal responsibility to make excuses is that not only do you diminish and dilute your own personal power, but you also weaken our own discipline, integrity and confidence which compounded over time often makes people feel so weak and vulnerable that they choose to live a life devoid of meaning, challenge or growth.

Responsibility is the ability to respond to life’s challenges and unplanned events. It’s flexibility in behaviour and creative thinking, It’s an attitude of mind it itself. Viktor Frankl in his classic book, Man’s search for Meaning, wrote, “Between the stimulus and response, there is a space. And in that space lies our freedom and power to choose our responses. In our response lies our growth and our freedom”

If you want to free yourself from the bondage of circumstances and enjoy the liberation that only full responsibility can bring then take the vow of embracing full ownership today.

“I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul”

Sign up to our blog here