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Archive For April 29, 2014

What It Means to Just Be Yourself and 3 Ways to Do It

I’ve heard the statement “just be yourself” so much. It sounds like an amazing thing to do, and I have wished many times that I could just do that. What I’ve wondered, though, is what in the world does that mean?

What if someone is a jerk to other people? Is it okay for them to just be themselves and go on being a jerk to everyone? How about people who are fearful of being around others and live a hermit-like life, avoiding people?

In my quest for answers I’ve found that it is very much possible to just be yourself. The person who is a jerk to others and the person who is afraid of social situations are, in actuality, not being themselves. Their real self is just being covered up with conditioned, fear-based thinking.

Our true self is who we really are when we let go of all of the stories, labels, and judgments that we have placed upon ourselves. It is who we naturally are without the masks and pretentiousness.

It is who we really are when we let fall to the floor the cloak of other people’s stuff that we have taken on.

Everything else that we claim to be when we say, “This is who I am!” is only a story.

Below are some steps that have helped me in uncovering my real nature, which is that being outside of the accumulated thoughts and beliefs that I have collected over a lifetime.

1. Get in touch with your inner child.

If you ever watch small children, you will notice just how free they are and how little they care about what other people think of them. They are happy and in the moment.

They are their true natures. They have not yet been socialized to “fit in” to a society that squashes that. They don’t care if people think that they are silly while they dance in the front yard for all of the neighbors to see.

Children are just pure love and light. If you really want to get in touch with your inner child, become freer. Play, have fun, enjoy the moment, do cartwheels in the front yard.

My son has taught me this more than anything. He has helped me to see just how stiff and serious I can be. Thanks to him, I have tapped back into something that was forgotten.

We play roles to fit into society and we suppress our true nature out of fear of what others think. If you find yourself worrying about being judged, remember that is merely just the socialized you, not the real you.

2. Become more aware of your thoughts.

You may be shocked by the number of negative thoughts that run through your mind on any given day. After so long, our reality begins to take shape based on all of these conditioned thinking patterns.

Become more aware of the quality of your thinking. Allow yourself to sit quietly every morning before starting your day for just five to ten minutes.

Yes, thoughts will come and go, but just allow them to do that without getting attached to them. Just observe them. When you are finished, continue observing the mind throughout your day.

We have so many unconscious beliefs that we have taken on over the years that were probably handed down to us from somebody else, and that we believed to be who we are. Becoming more aware of the quality of your thoughts, letting go of the old beliefs, and becoming more present can help in revealing your true nature.

We are all so much more than those old negative thinking patterns would ever allow us to believe.

3. Follow your intuition.

This is probably one of the most important factors in being yourself. I ignored my intuition for the longest time because I felt so obligated to others. Their happiness was more important than my own.

I lived at home until I was twenty-five, ignored my urges to move to a new city, and stayed in unfulfilling jobs because I was so afraid of what other people would think of me, of failing, and of stepping out of my comfort zone. Because of this, I was incredibly unhappy.

I will tell you this, from my own personal experience: When you start following the little nudges and urges that you get, you will have hopped onto the magic carpet ride of awesomeness.

It doesn’t mean that you will never have bumps in the road again, but when you are in alignment with your soul, you will always be steered in the best possible direction.

For me, it started when I followed my intuition out of a job where I was miserable, which was way out of character for me. I had nothing lined up, but thanks to my intuition, I landed back on my feet within a few months in an awesome new job.

Now, before you go quit your job, you can begin with small things, such as following through when you feel the urge to make a phone call, send an email, or take a different route to work. When you get into the habit of doing this with small things, it will make it easier to say yes to the big things, and to trust.

How do any of these things help you to just be yourself? Because they help you to be in alignment with your true nature.

Your authentic self is the real you that is beyond all of those conditioned beliefs and thinking patterns that you have accumulated throughout your life.

I was once a shy, reclusive, depressed, angry person—but I wasn’t “being myself.” While it is important to love and accept ourselves for where we are at the moment, looking back now, I see that I suppressed my true nature in order to please others and to fit in.

I began going within and doing spiritual study and practice in my late twenties, and have since become more aware of how much I was identified with my victim story, how I would play roles depending on who I was with, and just how much I cared about other people’s perceptions of me.

I had lost touch with my natural self and stuffed it away in a box. Whenever I would notice myself getting attached to the stories and labels in my head or would catch myself playing roles with others, I would just breathe and relax into the moment without any labels or judgments.

It was a challenge because I cared so much about being accepted by others. So I would ask myself, “How would I act right now if I had no cares of what others thought of me?” I realized that who I naturally am without anything else added is perfectly okay.

When you let go of the old ways of thinking, follow your bliss, and do what you love, you begin to align with happiness and peace. These are all indicators that you are connected with your true nature. You are then allowing your real self to shine forth in all its glory.

Victoria Ayres is a Certified Life Coach and writer. For inspiration on living a life of presence, passion, and purpose, please visit www.VictoriaAyres.com

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What Self-help Guru’s Won’t Tell You

If you are anything like me, you have stacks of self-help books on our shelves –some read, some not. Each book, conference, seminar is another person telling us what it is that we need to do to be happy. And, we read it and we think, this is it. I have it. I am going to finally be able to make those changes and be happier, thinner, more in charge.

And then what happens next is NOTHING. We go from inspiration to flat line and wonder what happened.

Well, I am going to let you in on a couple secrets. The first secret is that the answer that you are looking for doesn’t exist.

The second secret is that all the information in the world is not going to help if you don’t know how to apply it.

Bottom line is that self-help is a business and that business has been structured to make as much money as possible. So, they sell the dream. The dream is that there is an answer and if you know it then you will have the keys to the kingdom –so to speak.

It is not that they are lying to you. Many of these “experts” are brilliant and extraordinarily insightful and you will benefit from their work. The problem is not their work it is that you are led (and way too willing) to believe their work will provide you with –the ultimate answer.

So what will it give you? All that information will provide you with a bunch of potential insight. The problem with this is that if you do not know how to apply it, it won’t matter that you have it. Without understanding how the information fits your life and how you can personally apply it to get results you are SOL.

How you apply this type of knowledge is essential to it having any effect on your life at all and that is the piece of information that is not getting passed along. So, when trying to figure out which next step to take, look for someone who is not just talking about the answer but also how to implement it.

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Fight or Flight? Don’t Go With That Flow

In the past few years of blogging I’ve written plenty about break ups, the upheaval and uncertainty that can follow in their wake, and I’ve optimistically chimed over and over again, “Things change. Something will happen.” Those phrases are meant to settle some fears and angst about the flux of life, the unexpected, perhaps even the undesirable, and make it at least more acceptable, more manageable, more palatable. One thing that hasn’t changed over the years is my sense that, yes, things change and something will happen.

In response to such changes, I’ve previously referred to the Taoist notion of wu-wei, or effortless action. Simply put, when life is likened to a river with all of its rapids, eddies, and currents, I’ve strongly accepted the wisdom in “going with the flow,” and I’ve applied this insight to my life, especially my relationships. However, thanks to a handful of conversations with a handful of people in the past week, I’ve decided to nuance my appreciation of going with the flow, perhaps in multiple arenas of life, but especially in relationships. Because sometimes, and in some situations, going with the flow is just too easy.

As beings who grow, change, and can even voluntarily grow and change, going with the flow is too easy when it simply involves falling back into old habits, relying on old patterns, and reanimating old ways of doing things. If one is not careful, one can interpret “go with the flow” to mean that one not challenge, push, or try at all. In other words, not trying can also be considered as that which comes most naturally, the most effortless action.

If you were born an exemplar of good human behavior and that good behavior comes very easily to you, you’re amazing, go on with that flow, but this post is not for you. If, on the other hand, you are like almost every other person and have gone through any number of difficult, harsh, or even hurtful experiences throughout your life, then there’s a solid chance that you’ve developed defensive habits, patterns, and ways of doing things that were responses to such pain and hurt, stress and struggle. Such defensive mechanisms are often crucially important at various points in our lives and work to protect us when times get tough. Eventually, like the ol’ fight or flight response, we may not even have to think about such knee-jerk responses because they move us so “naturally.”

Unfortunately, when doing what comes most naturally to us amounts to employing these built up defensive mechanisms in situations that don’t pose imminent threats to our survival and well-being, such are the very habits and patterns that can actually hinder our ability to grow in healthier, happier ways. That is to say, when the river gets a bit turbulent, we already know how to fight or take flight; those things come easily to us.

What we might need to do then, perhaps without actually knowing yet how to do it, is resist the tendency to do what comes most naturally, to not go with the flow.

Here’s an example from the abovementioned conversations: Imagine that one encounters a fork in the relationship river where one can either continue working on the relationship or end it. If one repeats after me, “Well, things always change. Something will happen,” then there might be little incentive to work, to stay, to put in effort to continue with what one has right now. In fact, one might be so astute to know that, even in light of such a big change as the end of a relationship, he or she will ultimately be okay and something else will happen. Of course this is true. If you are alive right now and well enough to tell, then you’ve made it through the changes. What a happy thing to do deduce.

But then again, if one is apt to float away, move on, and go with the flow in that sense – if ending a relationship and leaving to go to the next thing is what comes very easily – then maybe this shouldn’t be the preferred option if what one seeks is growth.

To carry on with the river metaphor, maybe there are times when it is appropriate to paddle, to tread, perhaps even to the point of building up new muscles (which always requires some degree of pain and effort but eventually, as one gets stronger, using those muscles gets easier), to fight the current of our defenses. Maybe there are times when it is better for us, and for those with whom we frequently interact, to not go with the flow of what comes most naturally to us. Because some times, some times, if we’re not careful, we can too easily be hurtful, careless jerks to one another.

Learn more about Cori Wong here

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When To Push?

What I think is funny is that when you are out there looking for advice you can find it every perspective imaginable. What one self-help guru says another contradicts. Basically if you want to believe something is true you can find someone who will tell you that your way of doing things is the right way. You know why this is? Because there is some truth in everything.

There is not an answer. There is just an unfolding.

Over this last week, I have watched my tendency to push. I am definitely someone who can get stuff done. But, what I have not learned as well is how to allow things to happen to receive the things that come my way. So, I thought I would write about it a bit this week and look at when to push and when to “go with the flow”.

I’m sure you have heard the big names say it: In order to really make it you need to work harder than you ever have worked before. You need to push and push until you make it. Well, there is a lot of truth to this. It is also important to push in the right ways on the right things AND, sometimes it is even a good idea not to push.

So, how do we figure this out? When do we push and when to we allow things to be?

The trick is not looking for THE answer but finding your own next step.

Do you have a tendency to be a bit lackadaisical? Or, do you tend to be a work horse? Chances are if you have a default way of being then you need to practice the opposite in order to create more success and fulfillment in your life.

Signs that you push too much:

  • You find yourself irritated by people who walk slowly even when you are not in a rush.
  • You have focused on one portion of your life and disregarded others areas.
  • Your health has suffered because of your single minded effort.
  • You always want more than you have.

Signs that you do not push enough:

  • You have lost a relationship or work because you failed to take action.
  • You procrastinate and make excuses for avoiding certain tasks
  • You never want more than you have
  • You have years of lists that describe what you want to do and you have not done them.

Which ever category you fall into, see if you can find a way to move towards balance this week. Do you need to push or do you need to allow? Decide on one thing that can help shift your tendency and do it today.

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Everything is Perfect?

Are you into astrology? If you are you know that we are are going through something called a grand cross and this @#@$&$^ is really intense. 

One of the features of this particular experience is the burning away of  anything that doesn’t serve us. Whether or not you believe in astrology you can definitely relate to this experience. You know those points in time when every day that you wake up it seems like something else is getting screwed up!

 

It takes time to see that your troubles are bringing you much closer to where you truly want and need to be. Sometimes it is downright impossible. Still we want to move things along, we want to live our lives, and have that positive impact.

I am going to cut to the chase. Nothing is wrong. Nothing can be wrong. Even when it hurts it is still perfect. The real challenge is figuring out how to get ourselves to this place when it feels like the walls are falling down around you.  And the first trick is to realize that everything is OK.

 When we move out of panic, we can start to see that there is a divine order to everything. Even in the things that seem ominous and challenging.

   

Surrender: It is impossible to see that all is well if you are unwilling to surrender to the situation.  What is needs to be accepted just the way it is. When we fight with or deny life we create a negative attachment  and this perpetuates the feelings that something is wrong.

 

Affirmation: One of the ways to recognize that everything is perfect is to affirm the best in yourself, others and the situation.

 

Confirmation: Look for proof that things are working well rather than confirmation that they are not. In many ways, what we experience and therefore what we might feel is the result of what we pay attention to. 

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Five Good Reasons to Own Your Mistakes

A few years ago, Journalist Rachel Sklar fessed up to a mistake on her part. I admire her public apology greatly. Not only did she admit the mistake that critics called her out on, but she owned responsibility for the mistake, didn’t attempt to blame others and promised not only to make an effort to fix this mistake but also to do better in the future. And because she was so transparent in her confession and apology I am willing to take a chance on her again.

Her mistake was in overlooking diversity in a list she made when she would vociferously decry such an omission by others. I have seen quite a few of these homogeneous lists and, rather than admit their error, the list makers instead often become defensive and offer excuses, making no attempts to work harder to create a stronger, more credible list.

Here is what Ms. Sklar had to say:

It’s an omission we are fixing even as I type this, but that’s not the point: the point is taking responsibility for it and holding it up as yet another reminder of how easily groups are marginalized in our media. Even by people who loudly complain about being marginalized.

I am one of those people — and this mistake is my fault … Except that it was my job to notice — and as someone who always keeps an eagle eye for women on lists such as these, I take responsibility for not expanding that eye further.

If this were a list of just men I’d hit the roof, Twitter madly and blog angrily. So I not only understand why black listservs and blogs are blowing it up, I applaud it. I would too, and that’s part of the goal in writing this post. Things won’t change unless examples like this are held up as things that matter.

— Rachel Sklar at Mediaite: A Glaring Omission

Sklar’s post serves as a reminder that there are many good reasons why we should own up to our mistakes. Here are five of my favorites:

1. Get a job or a promotion
Owning up to your mistakes is Good Business 101. Thinking that your failings and missteps will not be noticed or will silently be forgiven only diminishes your talent and successes. Leaders admit their mistakes quickly and then share what they’ve learned and how they will move forward. Most importantly, they then take the actions they say they will and demonstrate their improvement.

2. Learn how to bounce back
It is also a good life skill to learn how to own your mistakes. You cannot learn from them if you are too busy trying to hide from or deny them. It is impossible to live a mistake-free life. It is also hard to learn how to stand up on our own two feet if we never risk falling down. One of the greatest benefits then from owning up to and learning from our mistakes is that we learn strength and resilience.

3. Defensiveness is not cute
To be stretched and grown by bouncing back from mistakes allows us to be taken more seriously by others as claims of perfection are pretty much unbelievable from any mere mortal. Also, attempting to shift the blame to other people is not the most honorable course of action. It makes you look weak and dishonest. Realizing that we are fallible humans makes us more attractive humans.

4. Become a better student of life
When we don’t try to cover up our boo-boos we gain valuable perspective that makes it possible to keep our eyes open for life’s lessons. Plus, we learn how to do things better the next time around. From actions tiny to tremendous, there are many for which life presents opportunities for a do-over.

5. Create change
Don’t let your ego prevent you from recognizing your mistakes. You know when you’ve done something badly or screwed up; if you don’t make an effort to own it and correct it, it will likely stick in the back of your mind for a long time. That’s not to say that admitting and correcting your mistake is an instant cure-all, but the freedom that comes from taking responsibility is, I believe, a crucial key to growth, happiness and the ability to move forward.

Admitting a mistake and dealing with the consequences can be embarrassing and possibly painful. You might (rightly in some cases) be concerned about possible repercussions. And your desire to come clean can potentially hurt people you care about, making the decision to confess your sins not always clearly the best choice. But I think in many, if not most, instances you’ll be glad you did, and those around you will appreciate your decision to do so.

Do you admit your mistakes? Do you ultimately feel better if you do, or do you find it better not to talk about them and simply move forward? How do you feel when someone confesses to you that she screwed up?

BlogHer is the leading participatory news, entertainment and information network for women online.

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The Blame Game: Taking Responsibility For Your Choices

Blame. It’s an easy thing to assign, but takes a lot of work to avoid. And yet, placing blame or ignoring culpability is what I did best for years.

As a younger man I loved my TV career. When I started in show business, I was determined to be the top host in the world – landing the best show on TV and giving it my all every week. I did land several big shows on big networks like HGTV, Discovery Channel, and National Geographic Channel; and to keep stability and make more money along the way I worked for a local TV news station doing traffic and weather. I had my goals firmly set, I had a plan for my life and my career, and I saw my finish line.

But all of that changed when I lost the three television projects I was working on within weeks of each other. In that one-month span my entire plan was wiped out, and I was faced with a blank slate, and no solid vision of where to turn.

I actually did have another plan, and I was already working it. I just see it at the time.

Since childhood I have been a student of enlightenment, motivation and serving others. When I was 10, I helped my grandfather deliver meals on wheels to his friends who were house-bound, prompting one of our recipients to remark about me: “That kid has the heart of a volunteer.” In grade school I found myself advising all my friends about their home lives, love lives, personal struggles and more. I just came naturally to me, and I had great results with it. I attended my first open AA meeting with my mother at the age of 13, and continued to attend on my own for years after.

In college I studied the workshops and teachings of Tony Robbins, Zig Ziglar, Wayne Dyer, Leo Buscaglia, and many others. In my early 30′s I completed the Landmark Education Curriculum for excellence, eventually becoming a head coach for Landmark programs in Los Angeles. I earned certifications in Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Hypnotherapy and Timeline Therapy, and was compelled to absorb all I could in the empowerment world because I loved learning anything and everything I could about personal growth. All that hard work and yet at the time I did it because I loved it.

With my TV career at a sudden standstill, I was faced with the prospect of failure – a concept I previously refused to consider – but that failure was now all I could see.

I was filled with anger and blame for the people I held responsible for my circumstances. I blamed my parents, my brother, the TV executives, the business itself, and anyone else I could think of. My anger toward others allowed me to be right about my resentment, and not focus on any of my own culpability. And that’s what blame did for me – it gave me the freedom to avoid personal responsibility, and be right about my anger.

But hanging on to my resentment and justifying it with blame only perpetuated the issue and its resolution remained painfully out of reach. I pushed away friends, stopped engaging in physical activities like running and biking, and worst of all began to regret my decision to pursue a life in TV in the first place. I began to look at my choices as a huge mistake, and the depression I felt as a result was all-encompassing. I became my own worst enemy, kicking myself when I was down.

Several months later I got an email from a close friend that I had helped get off alcohol while I was in training for my NLP certification. She had just reached her 1 year sobriety milestone and was writing to thank me for not only changing her life, but saving it. She wrote that she had been lost her whole life before working with me; searching for love in a bottle, or an empty affair. It wasn’t until I helped her release her pain that her addiction could finally be eliminated. She was happy, successful, sober, and in love, and our work together was the catalyst.

The letter floored me.

After reading the letter I realized I wasn’t a failure. I was a success. My volunteer heart, my love for enlightenment, motivation, and helping others, along with my personal experiences, all added up to who I was for others in need. I was making a difference in other people’s lives, and to me that was the ultimate accomplishment.

And that was when I knew what I had to do: I stopped blaming others for what were ultimately my choices, and forgave myself not only for my choices, but for second guessing them in the first place. I set forth to discover the destiny that was screaming my name for years, but eluded my listening.

I let go of the past and all my resentment, and chose to trust my true gift as a coach and mentor. The shift was definite, and the endeavor became effortless. As my friend put it, I was finally following my Yes’s.

So, what does accountability mean for you? When was the last time you challenged yourself to let go of blame and take responsibility for your own choices? Pick one time in your life where you blamed someone or something else for holding you back or getting in your way, and ask yourself… “Who really was in my way?” The answer may surprise you. It may set you free.

“When you change the way you look at things – the things you look at change!” -Wayne Dyer

Steve Truitt is a performance coach, TV host, and sought-after motivational speaker. Known as “The Now What? Coach”, Steve specializes in the fields of addiction, relationships, and personal transition.

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Are You Ready?

I consistently hear from people that they KNOW that they need to work with me but they do not have enough money, time, or support to make it happen. When you decide not to do something because of limited resources, when do you know if it is a real reason and when is it just an excuse? I feel that this is a very important question to answer so that we can make the healthiest, most empowering decisions for ourselves.

So how do you know if it is the right time to take that leap, to stretch, bend or extend yourself to get something you want?

There are a lot of opinions out there on this topic. Some people will say if you have the slightest impulse to move in a direction then you should go in that direction. Lets think about this. If you have the slightest impulse to cheat on your partner –do you? If you have the slightest impulse to eat an entire chocolate cake – do you? Maybe impulse is not the only thing to consider.

The question I ask is “What do you want for your life?” Really want. I am not talking about what are you willing to wish for when you have a few idle moments. I’m talking about what you want so badly that you are willing to work your tail off to get it.

Because if you want that amazing life, if you want things to totally change, you will get it.

You will see the change but you need to see it through.

You do not need to be without fear, you do not need to have the money, or the time. You need to have the commitment to yourself and your life. You need to know that you will stick with it. Because if you make this kind of commitment, NOTHING can stop you.

If there is something in your life that you want badly enough that you are willing to make this kind of commitment then yes,no matter what the circumstances, the time is now.

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7 Timesless Thoughts On Responsibility

Like discipline, responsibility is one of those words you have probably heard so many times from authority figures that you’ve developed a bit of an allergy to it. Still, it’s one of the most important things to grow and to feel good about your life. Without it as a foundation nothing else here or in any personal development book really works. So today I’d like to explore personal responsibility with the help from some timeless thoughts on the topic.

1. There is always a price to pay.
“Freedom is the will to be responsible to ourselves”
 -Friedrich Nietzsche
“Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.” -George Bernard Shaw
“When you blame others, you give up your power to change.”
 – Unknown

Not taking responsibility may be less demanding, less painful and mean less time spent in the unknown. It’s more comfortable. You can just take it easy and blame problems in your life on someone else. But there is always a price to pay. When you don’t take responsibility for your life you give away your personal power. Plus more…

2. Build your self-esteem.
“Disciplining yourself to do what you know is right and important, although difficult, is the high road to pride, self-esteem and personal satisfaction.” -
Brian Tracy
“The willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life is the source from which self-respect springs.”
Joan Didion

Why do people often have self-esteem problems? I’d say that one of the big reasons is that they don’t take responsibility for their lives. Instead someone else is blamed for the bad things that happen and a victim mentality is created and empowered. This damages many vital parts in your life. Stuff like relationships, ambitions and achievements.

That hurt will not stop until you wise up and take responsibility for your life. There is really no way around it. And the difference is really remarkable. Just try it out. You feel so much better about yourself even if you only take personal responsibility for your own life for day.

This is also a way to stop relying on external validation like praise from other people to feel good about yourself. Instead you start building a stability within and a sort of inner spring that fuels your life with positive emotions no matter what other people say or do around you. Which brings us to the next reason to take personal responsibility…

3. Give yourself the permission to live the life you want.
“When we have begun to take charge of our lives, to own ourselves, there is no longer any need to ask permission of someone.”
 -George O’Neil

By taking responsibility for our lives we not only gain control of what happens. It also becomes natural to feel like you deserve more in life as your self-esteem builds and as you do the right thing more consistently. You feel better about yourself.

This is critically important.

Because it’s most often you that are standing in your own way and in the way of your success. It’s you that start to self-sabotage or hold yourself back in subtle or not so subtle ways once you are on your way to the success you dream of.

To remove that inner resistance you must feel and think that you actually deserve what you want. You may be able to do a little about that by affirmations and other positive techniques. But the biggest impact by far comes from taking responsibility for yourself and your life. By doing the right thing.

4. Taking action becomes natural.
“Action springs not from thought, but from a readiness for responsibility.”
 -Dietrich Bonhoeffer

It is often said that your thoughts become your actions. But without taking responsibility for your life those thoughts often just stay on that 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 don’t get stuck in just thinking, thinking and wishing so much. You become proactive instead of passive.

5. Understand the limits of your responsibility.
“Make the best use of what is in your power, and take the rest as it happens.” -
Epictetus

Taking responsibility for your life is great. But that is also all that you have control over. You can’t control the results of your actions. You can’t control how someone reacts to what you say or what you do.

It’s important to know where your limits are. Otherwise you’ll create a lot unnecessary suffering for yourself and waste energy and focus by taking responsibility for what you can’t and never really could control.

6. Don’t forget to take responsibility in everyday life too.
“I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble.” -
Helen Keller
“You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.”
 -Abraham Lincoln

Life consists of each day. Not just the big events sometime in the future. So don’t forget to take responsibility for the little things today too. Don’t postpone it. Taking responsibility for your life can be hard and taxing on you. It’s not something you master over the weekend. So you might as well get started with the it right now.

7. Aim to be your best self.
“Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody expects of you. Never excuse yourself.” -
Henry Ward Beecher
“Peak performance begins with your taking complete responsibility for your life and everything that happens to you.” -
Brian Tracy

This is of course not easy. But it’s a lot of fun and the payoff is massive.

  • You are not trying to escape from your life anymore. Instead you take control, face what’s going on and so the world and new options open up for you.
  • You start taking action not just when you feel like it. Improvement isn’t about short spurts once in a while. Consistent action is what really pays off and can help you achieve just about anything.
  • You build your self-esteem to higher levels. And may discover that many smaller problems you experience regularly such as negative thinking, self-defeating behaviour and troubled relationships with yourself and others start to correct themselves as your self-esteem improves. You gain an inner stability and can create your own positive feelings within without the help of validation from other people. So how do you take responsibility? Well, it’s simply choice that you have to make.

Reviewing the reasons above – and now also the awesome quotes – is for me a powerful way to keep myself in line. Though it doesn’t always work. Doing the right thing in every situation is hard to do and also hard to always keep in mind. So don’t aim for perfection. Just try to be as good a person as you can be right now.

When you know those very important reasons above it becomes a lot easier to stick with taking responsibility. And to not rationalize to yourself that you didn’t really have to take responsibility in various situations.

That doesn’t mean that I beat myself up endlessly about it. I just observe that I have hurt myself and my life. And that doesn’t feel good. And so I become less prone to repeat the same mistake.

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