Lately, I’ve been tested or confronted with the opportunity to “help” someone be “responsible” for a situation.
With out getting into the details of THAT, I would like to share with you what I actually got from the whole sheebang, with out “helping” anyone but myself.
Does that sound kinda snobby?
I’m sure it may, but here’s what it comes down to: I’m not going to put extra scenarios, outcomes or expectations on someone else with out first starting with myself. I am the most important person I should be dealing with. Deal with myself, before I deal with others.
Blah blah blah… that’s probably all you’re hearing right now. Rightooo.
So, basically as I was fresh into this little situation, I started thinking about responsibility. How one should be held accountable or how one should “take responsibility for a situation.” How I could act in order for them to do that?
My mind worked in overdrive. I thought the same toxic thoughts over and over. But some where in all the chaos going through my mind, and even with all the surface level emotions I was I experiencing, I remembered this: Response Ability.
What zee heck? Response ability?
Let me explain where this took me, rock star reader.
Look at the word responsibility … “response-ability” …the ability to choose your response. (Ahh… yes, I liked where this was taking me already.)
Life can shit on us, right? It can throw us curve ball, after curve ball. It can place us in negative, toxic situations where we never thought we would ever be. We can be hurt by people we love or we can be the ones hurting.
As I experienced pretty much all of the above, I hovered on the thought of helping someone “take responsibility” for the situation and I still couldn’t figure out how or what to do. Then, I had a moment of clarity…
Helping someone take responsibility isn’t up to me. It’s up to them. If I am trying to deal with a situation from the starting point of trying to get make them act, well… that’s a bad place to start. I have to start with me. You can’t help anyone, unless you first help yourself. And how do you help yourself? You take initiative. You start by choosing your response to the situation. Response ability.
Response Ability means to look at the situation, the reality of it all, and purposely decide your response for YOU. It means not being reactive, rather being PROTACTIVE. Reactive means things like “fault” and “ guilt” play a part of the perception and response. Proactive means you shape the circumstances instead of complaining about them and being the victim.
The other thing I came clear to in the last few days, is making your initial choice needs to be done away from the hurricane of emotions that you originally felt, when the situation first surfaced. All too often we tend to respond on the fly, out of heightened emotion, before collecting our breath and looking at the situation as a whole. Something that works well when you are in this sort of scenario? Seek first to understand, then to be understood.
Usually we respond with a hurricane of emotions because we feel powerless. And sometimes to regain power, we place strong or hurtful emotions “out there” and “onto” other people (guilt, blame, fault). Have you ever done that? Where you just lose your shit on someone because you are so mad? It’s an unhealthy way we “communicate” …we think doing so will get us what we want and allow us to regain power and control of the situation.
I’ve done it. You probably have, too. And that is totally okay, hot stuff! We are only human; those dang emotions can get the best of us.
But we can choose a better response to the situation… a response that isn’t inflated with raw reactive emotions that revolve around fault and blame. We just need to take a step back and remember, I have the ability to choose how I respond to this.
Hopefully the way you choose will be the way that takes care of you first, in the healthiest way possible. Hopefully the way you choose will be proactive, and not reactive. And hopefully the way you choose will have you taking the high road, moving forward and with your character and dignity in tact.
You are response able. You have the ability to choose your response.
Please choose wisely.
Sending love, hugs and butt slaps,