One of the things I simultaneously love and sometimes hate about life is that in EVERY case, we have just two choices. We live in a world of duality. That is a fact. Everything is one thing or the opposite; light or dark, up or down, good or bad, loving or fearful, etc.
A couple of weeks ago, for example, I wrote about something Albert Einstein said: “The most important decision we make is whether we believe we live in a friendly or a hostile universe.” Notice that he only gave us two choices, not seven, not five, not even three. Two choices, friendly or hostile.
So this week I want to write about the choice people struggle with the most: taking responsibility or being a victim. Now, when I write about it that way, surely your reaction is some version of “I surely don’t want to be a victim so of course I’ll choose to take responsibility.” But not so fast.
Let’s say you come into work one day and someone is rude to you or treats you poorly. Do you take responsibility for that? Do you ask yourself: what’s going on with me that I would create someone being rude to me or treating me badly? I’ll bet you don’t. I’ll bet you think it’s all them and you have nothing to do with how they treat you.
Or, to take an even worse example: you are constantly confronted on the road by slow, inconsiderate, even irresponsible drivers. Do you feel like you’re a helpless victim and just need to learn to put up with that or, as above, do you ask yourself: how come I’m creating all these slow, inconsiderate, even irresponsible drivers?
My guess is that you can’t even believe I’m suggesting what I’m suggesting. But I am, which is why I say this is the most difficult of the choices people have to make. What you likely don’t understand fully is that you create EVERYTHING in your life and there is no exception to that statement. But hardly anyone believes that. And because people don’t believe it, they end up feeling like a victim. Things just happen, people just do what people do, circumstances are just that, circumstances.
Nothing can be further from the truth. You are the 100% creator of your experience. Like it or not, that’s what is. So if you really want to be an amazing and powerful leader, spouse, parent, friend, boss, coworker, sister, brother, whatever, choose to take responsibility, for everything. Not just some of it but all of it.
And for those of you who are still struggling with this idea that you create everything in your life, it doesn’t matter. Why? Because, in this world of duality, which is where this article started, everything is one thing or the opposite. So would you rather take responsibility or be a victim? Would you rather feel like things just happen to you and there’s really nothing you can do about it or would you rather feel like you’re the one in charge of your life? Stated that way, I hope the choice is evident.