This is a guest post from my good friend, Jodi Chapman. I love the empowering message here. Read below to learn more about Jodi’s new program, Coming Back to Life Ecourse, beginning 10/1. Yes, it’s an affiliate link but I wouldn’t recommend anything to you that I didn’t completely believe in myself.
This post isn’t a feel-good, sugar-coated kind of post.
I usually write those, but something inside of me wanted to share a bit of tough love with all of us.
So please bear with me for a moment while I take off the gloves and put on the stern look and the pointing finger. (Not really, but maybe just a little bit.)
This post may push some buttons and ruffle some feathers and call all of your defenses in and really have you not liking me at all.
But before that happens, please know that: 1. it comes from love, 2. I’m writing it just as much for me as I am for you, and 3. it needs to be said.
So, enough with the preliminaries – I’ll get on with it by sharing three examples that all have one thing in common:
It’s Not My Fault
I listed my filing cabinet on Craigslist, and a woman called right away and said that she would be over the next day to pick them up. So the next day, I waited and waited, and she never called. For any of you who have ever sold anything on Craigslist, you know that it is pretty common to have people flake out.
I was a bit frustrated, but in the meantime, someone else had expressed interest, so I called him and set up a time for him to come look. Right before he was scheduled to arrive, the woman from the previous day called and said that she was still interested. I told her that I was sorry, but I had already moved onto the next person.
She went on to blame the following for her not showing up (or calling) the day before: her husband for not reminding her, her kids for being so distracting, her money troubles for putting her in this situation to begin with, and God for giving her a disability that makes it hard to remember things.
Have you ever been so excited to start reading a self-help book because you just knew that it was going to be the one that changed your life and fixed everything that was wrong?
You read it as quickly as you could – not even bothering to do the exercises because there wasn’t time – you just wanted to feel better! Not even bothering to apply any of the lessons to your own life – to sit with them, to meditate on them, or to internalize them. No time for that – you needed to feel better quickly!
When you finished it, you were surprised at how nothing in your life had changed, right? I’ve definitely been there. My husband compares this to someone joining the gym, never going, and then blaming the gym a year later when their weight is exactly the same as it was when they joined.
If Only He/She Would…
I once had dinner with a couple who had gotten into a fight before they came over. The tension between them was palpable. In between bites, they couldn’t help but throw jabs at the other (sometimes passive aggressive and sometimes straight on). It was a night filled with non-stop blaming and finger pointing.
Seeing Things Differently
And so here’s where the tough love bit comes in.
You – we – all of us have to take personal responsibility for our lives.
Period. It’s time. Now. Right now.
In the first example, it would’ve been so easy for the woman to have just admitted that she forgot and because of that missed out on the filing cabinet. It happens – we’re all human, and we all make mistakes.
The second example shows how we frequently want someone else to fix our lives for us (such as the author of the book). We’re so quick to defer our responsibility to others – it just seems easier this way. And if they can’t fix our lives, we get to blame them! But if we could shift this into seeing the self-help book simply as a tool to help us go within and get to know ourselves better, it puts the responsibility back on ourselves – in a good way! Because now we are back in the driver’s seat and can make real change!
The last example really brought home (for me at least) how no one wants to be wrong, and it definitely takes a strong, grounded, conscious person to be able to stop the jabs and admit their fault in the fight. What’s really wonderful is that we can take the right and wrong out of it completely and make it about understanding and growing instead.
Empower Yourself By Taking Personal Responsibility
Taking responsibility for our lives is not always the easiest path to go down. Being on this path means that we have to own our mistakes and really become conscious of our role in every part of our life (whether we like where we are or not). And that can be hard.
But it can also be empowering. We can start to stand taller knowing that our life is our own, and that we are creating something that we are truly proud of. When we can own our mistakes and grow from them, our spirit starts to shine again. When we can learn lessons and apply them to our life, our ability to soar strengthens. When we own up to each part of our life, we make it our own. And only then can we be free to live fully.
And that’s what I wish for each of us.
Jodi Chapman is the author of the inspirational blog, Soul Speak; the upcoming book, Coming Back to Life: How an Unlikely Friend Helped Me Reclaim My True Spirit; and the bestselling Soulful Journals series, co-authored with her husband, Dan Teck. Her new Coming Back to Life Ecourse begins on October 1.
If you are ready to live fully and take responsibility for your life, I would love for you to join me for the Coming Back to Life Ecourse, beginning 10/1. It’s a helping hand, a loving community, and concrete tools and techniques to help you come back to life all wrapped up into one loving course. When you sign up, you’ll receive over $175 in bonus gifts immediately!
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