How do you think of the word “Responsibility?” To me it is a very heavy word usually associated with onus or blame. “I am responsible, therefore it’s my duty or my fault.” We are NOT perfect and we DO make mistakes. I know I do. When you look at responsibility as fault or blame, you are “unavailable to respond.” You are in your own head worrying whether you are getting it right or if you did something wrong. When you are so intent on “getting it right,” you will miss opportunities to truly relate with people. The focus is on yourself rather than on others or the issue at hand.
What if responsible meant the ability to respond, thus “response-able:” When you are clear, you can truly listen to others and be ABLE to respond in an objective way rather than taking it personally and reacting on “automatic pilot.”Try this little exercise: Think of the last time you had a conversation with anyone, pay attention to how your body felt. What was going through your mind. Were you listening to them, watching how they are listening to you? Were you hearing them or were you thinking of what to say next? If you can’t remember anything about them in the conversation, you were by yourself in that conversation. Just notice and leave a comment about what you noticed and what you might do differently.
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