It’s brought to my attention regularly at the moment, both through my own experiences and through those of my clients, that we commonly struggle to create real change in our lives.
Sometimes this change relates to personal things we really want to do differently – our relationship to exercise, alcohol, personal relationships etc, but sometimes it feels more external – our responses to coworkers, a particular situation, the state of the world, the choices of our leaders.
We often believe that if the change we are seeking is personal and clearly “about us” then it is our responsibility to make that change. In other words, it is within our power to actually shift this relationship and make things different.
We can exercise more, schedule our time better, restrict our alcohol intake, even set goals around life achievements. However, if the change is related to another person or situation the ability to change things feels out of our control.
It was in a recent coaching conversation, that I heard the statement that reminded me of this perspective: “I don’t know why I’m so angry about it.” When a person or situation elicits this response in us, we feel out of control or as if there is no choice about our response.
The frustration inside us grows and we can begin to spiral. Often our behaviour doesn’t represent our true selves and we can become embarrassed by our actions.
The only way to bring back a feeling of having choice in these situations is to own it. Own the feelings that are showing up for us and take real responsibility for the part we have played in getting to this point.
It is in realising how our choices have landed us where we are that we begin to feel like we have a choice to respond differently. This is truly one of the most empowering and freeing concepts to take on board.
Once you learn that taking responsibility for every bit of our lives is as rewarding as it is, you’ll never turn back. What’s happening in your life, your work, and your family that you could take full ownership of? Try it out.
Letting go of any element of blame will elevate your ability to feel like you have choices, to be happier, and to create the work experiences and life that meets all your needs.