Taking Responsibility for Oneself
One of the defining qualities of Adulthood is being able to take responsibility for yourself and others
Having pondered this for a new years resolution, I thought I would share some of my thinking and insights
There are many dimensions to taking responsibility, especially for oneself.
Being able to respond to the requirements of a situation is relatively easy, and requires you to just observe and understand the need of the moment. If you are responding to a crisis or a lesser situation, you may need to understand the role you are to play. Whether that is a leading, directing and organising role, or one where you volunteer your services, skills, time to the direction of others. Being responsible for a child or family, may mean ensuring that you are taking care of every aspect and dimension of that child's well being. The context will either broaden or shorten the perspective. Taking responsibility for the preparation of dinner will require less factors to consider than taking responsibility for a child’s education.
The only limit to your ability to respond and take responsibility in the above examples, is usually your experience, level of perception (which I’ll define here as your level of understanding about the nature of reality, and it’s many realms and spheres of existence), and level of awakening ( to what degree you are still following, cultural, colloquial, societal, conventional, national identity, and other learned or imposed definitions and programmes of who you are and what you must do - plus your understanding of who you really are as an embodied soul).
Taking responsibility for yourself will obviously be subject to levels of awakening, perception, experience, etc; and there are other factors to take into account. It requires you to take full care of yourself in all levels and dimensions, that you choose to allow yourself access to, and dominion over.
There is also a level of acceptance that is necessary. You will need to accept the consequences of actions you take, and the situations they create, and the effects they produce. Those may have ongoing ramifications and implications. If I decide to undertake a course of action, let’s say learn a new skill, the activity does not stop at the decision, or enrolment on an appropriate course that I have spent time selecting. It may require a change of outlook, daily routine, habit, and acceptance of the newly acquired skill set and the resulting lifestyle, having this skill set produces. It may also impact how people react to you and how you see the world. All of which are part of the original desire to respond to a particular want or need.
Taking responsibility for the decisions we make requires us to understand that there will be changes and unforeseen consequences resulting from the decision and we have to accept those as well. I have friends that have gone on empowerment courses that change their outlook on life and then turn into victim when their newly acquired skill set violates someone whose response is less than desired - or more than anticipated. They made a decision to change, but did not understand or foresee the consequences in all areas of their lives that this decision would impact; and did not make the connection to the new situation.
Likewise, I have friends that have undergone deep shamanic experiences, having first researched the course or workshop, and then only thought about the implications of the event and the time they participated in the sessions. They were not able to conceive all the implications of the decision: It might change their outlook. It might unlock access to realms that were not previously known about. It might unlock hidden talents or even psychic abilities, that they might not be able to shut down. It might show them who they really are and how much work they have to do to get a level of comfort in their identity. It might show them what has happened to them in the past or past lives and then they have to re-live the trauma and catharsis that those realisations bring up - which might take days. Also, if they had unlocked a deep set trauma, they may be feeling all of this for months.
These extreme examples are used to show the levels, degrees, or spheres of responsibility. Our decisions have consequences which may have multidimensional implications, and taking responsibility for ourselves requires that we are prepared to respond to the entire lifecycle of the decision. I choose to do or be “A” and “A” might produce effects that last for years, therefore I am prepared to accept and respond to the entire situation for as long as that decision produces additional effects.
You have every right to alter your commitment to the decision (and also take responsibility for the ensuing consequences), and some decisions may need to be re-enforced, and recommitted to, periodically. Relationships often fall into this category.
The other aspect is the ongoing work that some decisions require. If I decide to strengthen my body, and my sphere of reference includes nutrition and exercise, then I have to ensure I do the necessary work and make the necessary adjustments when and where, and to what degree. No one else will do that for me unless I employ them. If one falls into victim mode and starts to blame others for the decisions you make, and the changes or consequences that those decisions impose, then that may not be entirely appropriate and may show you that you have not really taken full responsibility for yourself, but gave your power away to someone or something else.
We may need to learn something about how to take responsibility for a decision to do or participate in something that is currently outside of our perceptual map. I have never done a parachute jump, for example, so I do not understand yet the considerations and implications of such an undertaking. Therefore, I would need to do a bit of research to understand what I’m implicating myself in and what the preparation and aftermath might be, and potential knock-on consequences. That might seem like way too much effort for those who like to be a bit more spontaneous and throw caution to the wind, and for less consequential decisions. Which is fine, so long as the lack a preparation does not then put you into a situation where you then give your power away to the situation or person, or institution, and then fall into victim mode where you then further give your power away to the situation; if something happens that you were not expecting, and were ill-equipped, or not prepared to handle.
How far do we take this?
Determining what we have responsibility over is an education process. We may need to learn about the many levels that our being operates in, for which we can take responsibility, such as:
- Our emotions - do we give our power away to the situation or person and let them alter our moods or do we alone determine how we feel?
- Our energy fields - knowing how to protect ours, and knowing when we are encroaching on others, either stealing their power and energy, or indeed giving our power away to them.
- Our body - understanding how to take care of our body, can go as deep as reading labels of the products we use, the food we eat, to ensure we are not poisoning ourselves. It may be as grave as understanding all the body’s systems and processes so we understand what puts the body in and out of balance. This area alone can consume a life time’s work.
- Our speech - does what we say and write strengthen ours and our audiences energy systems? Does it improve on the silence, and bring about expansion or contraction of perspective? Does it free or limit, release or bind? Do we bring our subject closer to the divine or pull them further away?
- Our behaviour - Do we behave in a way that promotes love kindness and happiness, or does our behaviour limit ourselves or others?
- Our Space and environment - Do we ensure that we put ourselves in places that support our health etc?
You will decide automatically what you care about and what you have the capability to influence. Fortunately the energy that is now available to everyone, is supporting us in our ability to hold larger concepts and bigger spaces and ideas. So more and more we will be able to take responsibility to a greater degree than before and include more and more factors in our sphere of influence and operation.
There is much more that can be discussed, and I will leave that for others to fill in. I hope this has been useful and wish you well in your our preparations for 2017.
Much love and good luck