The day you are truly free is the day you take full responsibility for your life. When you approach the things that happen to you with a sense of ownership, it creates empowerment that you are in control of the results you generate.
There are a lot of layers you need to go through to really arrive at this place, but it’s something that I’ve found the most successful people in the world have mastered. I first heard it as one of Gary Vaynerchuk’s core philosophies. Jim Rohn says “The day you graduate from childhood to adulthood is the day you take full responsibility for your life.” Jocko WIllink even wrote a book about it called “Extreme Ownership”.
The opposite of taking full responsibility is shaming, blaming, and justifying. Instead of internalizing the results and seeing how you are responsible for them, shaming, blaming, and justifying is your way of externalizing the results. This happens unconsciously because your sense of self is threatened by whatever happened and it wants to create separation from it. But this reaction is harmful over the long run because it doesn't create any lasting change.
Taking responsibility is practicing the ability to respond. Response-ability. It means that you’re consciously interpreting what happened, analyzing the factors and conditions that caused it to be so, and the role that you played within it. Your response is your conscious choice.
The alternative is reacting. This is an unconscious, reflexive action that is optimized to meet short-term needs. This causes you to externalize and blame, shame, and justify so that you have an explanation for what happened but it's only addressing a much more superficial level.
Our growth is in the depth. The more we can elevate our consciousness, and heighten our awareness to what’s happening moment to moment, the more our higher self will be expressed in the ways we show up in the world.
Taking full responsibility is a mindset. If your mindset is just your patterned way of thinking, and you see all events through the lens of being responsible for what happens, you start to tell a story that gives you more agency and a belief that you have control of your future.
The beautiful byproduct of this is - While it’s hard to take responsibility for the challenging, seemingly unfair things that happen, it also energizes your ability to know that you equally can achieve your goals and make your dreams come true!