Some people change jobs again and again and they always run into the same problems. Their boss is incapable and their colleagues are idiots. Have you heard this before? Do these people have bad luck and run into the same problems over and over again? Or, are they maybe a part of the problem?
The Blame Game
It is easy to blame others or the circumstances. But is finger pointing helpful to solve a problem? Of course, it is not easy to admit that we might be responsible for our miserable situation. It is not easy to admit this to ourselves and it is even harder to admit this in front of others.
Imagine your project at work went wrong and thus you did not get your commission. You are angry. You tell your friends that your colleagues did not meet their deadlines and that your boss planned the project all wrong in the first place. You (and only you) gave your best to accomplish the project. Really?
When you take responsibility on the other side, you will be able to learn for future projects. If you have a certain mindset, feel accountable and in control you are much more likely to succeed in future situations.
In our project example you could have reminded your colleagues about the deadlines or you could have spoken with your boss about the project planning upfront.
And of course, not to blame others has a positive impact on your relationships, too.
You Are in Control
To blame others all the time basically means that you say you are not in control. However, you have more control than you think. You have control over your project, your job, your life.
Sure, there are situations you cannot control. And, there is the old saying: “Change what you can change, accept what you cannot change and be wise enough to distinguish between the two options.”
Even if you cannot control certain situations you might still be able to control something that brings you into (or out of) that situation. For example, if you have a job that requires you to work from 9 to 5 in an office cubicle due to old and strict company policies it might be hard to change that. But you still can find another job with more flexibility.
It might be tempting to blame others. Sometimes it might even seem like people who always blame others get promoted quicker. But being accountable, fair and bound to your values usually pays off in the long run.
Being accountable means that you take control of your life. You are not the victim, not the passenger in your life. You are the driver. And this certainly helps you with your goals and life goals, too.
Keep Your Goals in Mind
It is important to always keep your goals in mind, no matter whether you are at work, with your friends or family, or when actually working on your goals. Taking control and being accountable will help you to achieve your goals, blaming others will not.
Think about your big goals and life goals whenever you start something new, whether it is a work project, a new learning experience, or a family vacation. Your goals will guide you and help you to make the right decisions. And, this is taking control. You might still make a wrong decision but in this case you can learn from it, grow, and make better decisions in the future. This is being accountable.
Now It Is Your Turn
Think about situations where you see some lack of control. What can you do to gain more control here? What would you change if you had control? And, how can this support your goals?
Try to take responsibility if something is your fault. Apologize and suggest an alternative.
It might feel uncomfortable at the beginning. However, over time it will become a habit and you gain more and more control over your life.
Become a part of the solution, not a part of the problem.