Own it!

My man has been away on business for the past week. To say that I am missing him is an understatement, I have so many things buzzing around in my head that I want to share with him. Whenever I am alone for any amount of time, I have time to think and process things, and every now and again I hit on something that is really important and life changing for me. Well you’ve guessed it I have had some revelations over the past week and I want to share them with him.

Some of those things I can share with you right now, so let me get my thoughts into some sort of order and begin. My divorce has changed and shaped me over the past two years. Sometimes it is difficult to make such life changing decisions and then having to deal with the ‘nuclear fallout’ of those choices we have made. I am always reminded of the fact that we have the opportunity to make choices but also have to live with the consequences of those choices. We have to own it.

Over recent weeks I have listened to people around me complaining about various things that they are dealing with and the one thing that keeps coming back to me is that they need to ‘own it’. We all make choices that may seem ludicrous to others, sometimes those choices back fire and we are left with a mess to clean up. We are not perfect and therefore will make mistakes and hopefully learn from these mistakes and move on. Some people for whatever reason make the same mistakes over and over again, and no matter how difficult it is for us to understand why they keep doing it, ultimately they need to take responsibility and own it. We can be the shoulder they cry on, we can be the one that nods in understanding and offers comfort and support. However, we do not have to be the one to fix it for them, we do not have to go in and mop up their mess. As friends I think we need to learn to step back and allow them to work it out, allow them to get to that point where they recognise where they are going wrong.

Now for me this is very hard, my personality wants to fix and make better. I cannot tell you how much I dislike this part of my personality, the part that won’t let go and let be. I almost feel as though I am cheating myself by stepping back and not rescuing someone from the mess they have created. At the same time I understand that is how I am wired and it is not such a bad thing, it makes me who I am, but I need to learn to manage it. I don’t have to rescue the world, people are capable of rescuing themselves when they put their minds to it.

For a while I worked in a church and I was always amazed at the messes people got themselves into. What really surprised me was that they would always stand there saying “I don’t know how this happened, it isn’t my fault”, they always wanted someone else to be responsible for their mess or problem. Instead of sitting up and accepting that part of what had happened is their fault because of the choices they have made, and then figuring out how to fix it and asking for help, they were very happy to sit back and play victim. In my opinion owning it and then asking someone if you can be accountable to them, helps you to deal with your issues. Asking someone if you can be accountable to them in no way relinquishes the responsibility from you, it should make you want to change your ways and show them that you are ‘owing it’, and gives that person the right to call you out when you are heading in the wrong direction. Having a person to be accountable to means that when you do mess up and they call you out on it, you cannot get mad with them, you have asked them to fulfil this role and that is what they are doing. The problem is that most people actually don’t want to be accountable to anyone because it is far easier sitting back and complaining about the situation than going out and doing something to improve things.

I think that life would be a whole lot simpler if we owned our mistakes, and learnt from them, if we moved on and proved to ourselves that we can get over them and be a better person, instead of making it someone else’s problem.

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