I went to an old friend for the definition of responsible; a hardcopy dictionary from my young adult years that I haven’t used since Google searches came into our lives.
“Able to answer for one’s conduct or obligations.”
“Trustworthy: able to choose for oneself between right and wrong.”
Synonyms: trustworthy, accountable
Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary (published 1986)
As I said in the Introduction, we gain other’s trust when they see that we are being responsible and making good choices. From this they learn to trust us and, I believe, are more willing to accept our help when that help is from our “genuine selves.”
Far too many people say life (sh*t) happens and there’s nothing we can do about it. While I understand that thinking, I also believe that it’s only real and sticks if we let it.
You can accept the negative or learn from it.
I think that part of being responsible is figuring out how to pick ourselves up, how to accept what’s come our way and:
- accept it
- do something about it.
Take responsibility for what’s happened. Don’t blame others and certainly don’t blame yourself. Know that it’s yours to own and do something about. It would be too easy to let something we do or don’t control knock us off our chosen path and say, “It’s not worth it.”
I say it is worth it! You are worth it! I am worth it!
When I think of the responsible decisions we need to make I always think of my gut response; what do I know to be true? We need to know and trust ourselves to make the right decision because we know it to be right.
Sure, we can bounce it off other people or go for a walk and think it through but when it comes right down to it:
- We know we need to make the right decision.
- We know what that decision needs to be.
And then just start. Like Nike says, “Just Do It.” We have to trust ourselves to know and then trust that there will be a bridge when we reach the river that would wash us away. And if there’s not a bridge, build one. Know that you can do it. Know that you know.
Be resilient. Persevere. If it’s important to you make it important to do.
Being responsible also includes for others, but I’ll talk more about that in the next post I just want to say here that responsibility is not a selfish act. We don’t want to make decisions that only benefit ourselves, although we do want to do them from our higher selves.
Rather, we want to make responsible decisions for ourselves and others. What we choose will have an effect on others, especially our family and friends. Responsible decisions benefit everyone.
What are your thoughts about your own responsibility and the decisions you make? If you’re like me, you sometimes struggle with knowing what the right decision is. But have faith in yourself and trust that the answer is inside you.
In the next post, I’ll be talking about being responsible for others and how we need to help, not harm.