SA Leadership Podcast Episode #149

Responsibility Capacity - Your Choice to Take Charge of Your Life


You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today! – Abraham Lincoln

Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness, it turns out, is largely a matter of conscious, choice, and discipline – Jim Collins

Donald S. Drusky, in a law suit against God, Presidents Ronald Regan & George Bush, television networks, all 50 states, every single American, the FCC, all Federal Judges, and the 100th-105th Congress. He alleged that that his life had been ruined first by God and everyone named were willing accomplices in this plan of destruction.

His desired outcome was to have God to return his youth, grant him guitar playing skills of the greats, resurrecting his mother and his pet pigeon. If God fails to show up in court then God loses by default.

It is easy to laugh at such an outrageous abdication of responsibility in Mr. Drusky. Responsibility may not be the most exciting subject to review, but it is the most impacting. Here are six reasons why you and I should improve our responsibility which impacts our success.

Responsibility Creates the Foundation for Your Success

Novelist Michael Korda stated, “Success on any major scale requires you to accept responsibility. In the final analysis, the one quality that all successful people have is the ability to take responsibility.” Winston Churchill stated that the price of greatness is responsibility. Here are three key insights:

The size of the opportunity requires the same amount of responsibility.

Opportunity is lost when responsibility is neglected.

Tomorrow’s opportunity is determined by yesterday’s responsibility.

Responsibility Puts You In Control of Your Life

Many people think about their lives as something that just happens to them instead of something they can control themselves. They drift through life reacting to the actions of others instead of taking steps on their own behalf. Such people are like rudderless boats on the ocean, completely at the mercies of the tides to take them where they will. You can choose control the things that are within your control.

Responsibility Builds Your Self Esteem

The willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life is the source from which self-respect springs – Joan Didion. First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt stated, In the long run, we shape our lives and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.

Responsibility Makes You Ready For Action

Theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer stated, “Action springs not from thought, but from a readiness for responsibility.” Author Korrapati in his book 108 Pearls of Wisdom for Every College Student writes, “It is often said that your thoughts become your actions. But without taking responsibility for your life, those thoughts often just stay on the mental stage and aren’t translated into action. Taking responsibility for your life is that extra ingredient that makes taking action more of a natural thing. You get stuck in just thinking and wishing so much. You become proactive instead of passive.

Responsibility Makes Your Habits Serve You

Positive habits are decisions that we make once and then take responsibility to manage daily. When you make a good decision and then manage that decision day-to-day, we see positive results through the development of those positive habits. Without management, a good decision dies. Lou Holtz stated that the person who complains the way the ball is dropped is likely the one who dropped it.

Responsibility Earns You Respect and Authority

Respect is gained on difficult ground and it is not given or granted to us if unearned. Stephen Covey, author of The Speed of Trust states, “Say what is on your mind. Don’t hide your agenda. When we talk straight, we tell the truth and leave the right impression. Most employees don’t think their bosses communicate honestly. This creates a trust tax. This causes speed to go down and costs to go up. We spend entirely too much time trying to decipher truth from spin.” Author Eric Greitens in the book Resilience writes, “The more responsibility people take, the more resilient they are likely to be. The less responsibility people take for their actions, lives, and happiness, the more likely it is that life will crush them. At the root of resilience is the willingness to take responsibility for results.


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