What’s the easiest reaction when things you do not enjoy happen to you: Taking responsibility or blaming the world?
I have no doubt that blaming someone is always the simplest solution to let our emotions go out. But is it a correct one?
Let’s blame someone!
A general assumption of mine is that the easiest path is rarely the correct path, and this is just another relevant example.
What will blaming someone bring to you? And to this person?
Maybe a short-term relief, maybe even not. But will it bring anything positive? I doubt it!
Blaming anyone — be it someone else or yourself — only carries negative emotions and actions. Nothing to build upon. So…
Instead of blaming, or even searching for someone to blame, let’s try another path: Taking responsibility for the present unpleasant situation.
What if I’m taking responsibility?
The underlying paradigm behind this approach is pretty simple : we only control ourselves. Hence by focusing on our role in the play, we focus on what we can change.
Let me be clear on one thing here: It’s absolutely not about saying that we’re really are responsible for what’s happening.
It is just a thought process that prevents us from getting lost in blaming others, so we can move forward. It’s an attitude, not a certitude!
Since we will never change others, it’s useless to focus on their (presumed) responsibility, for it will only create suffering.
Complexity always blurs the lines.
The reality is that nothing is black or white, and most situations are so complex that the origin is rarely confined to only one cause.
And even when the cause is pretty simple, the current repercussion is almost never an immediate response to it!
Therefore understanding what brought to the present situation would require looking in the past, and sorting through way too many possibilities.
The current situation could be a consequence of our relationships, our actions and non-actions, our words… And of the same things from anybody that we crossed in life !
But is it really useful to find the true cause? Do we need to find the person at fault for this situation?
To me, we don’t. And the odds are that if we find one, it will be a mistake, as most situations are from many sources, us being one.
Ok then, what is “taking responsibility”?
That’s why acting as if we were in full responsibility seems to be a greater game to play: We force ourselves to face the mirror.
Sometimes there’s something to scratch on our face, and sometimes there’s nothing. But at least, by taking responsibility, we looked at it carefully!
Looking at others’ actions is nothing but a waste of time, as they will do just as they want to do (just as we do!).
To me, taking responsibility thus mainly means focusing on what we brought to the equation, the role we played, so that we can do smarter next time.
Looking backward won’t build future.
In every situation, we should choose how to react, for not choosing will most likely lead to suffering. And to me, there are only two main paths:
We can get lost in our minds trying to sort the right from the wrong. Or we can just search for the correct deeds, the ones which will clear the situation up.
It’s all about not judging.
Taking the current reality for what it is, and taking the past for what it is. Fleeing neither of both, but looking forward at building our future.
Remember that every attachment is an hindrance.
Being attached to past actions or future achievements will create suffering. One is there and will remain, and the other is not here yet and may never be.
Play a fair game.
Keep in mind that taking responsibility it’s just a mind game.
You can play attack, you can play defense or you can forget the rules and play by yours. Because there are no rules!
As egotistical as it sounds, focusing on oneself is the most altruistic thing one can do.
It may be hard to grasp at first, but then it becomes absolutely clear.