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Personal responsibility refers to your ability to hold yourself accountable for your decisions, actions and inactions. You may not always like to have others tell you what to do and what not to do. But, most of those times, you will realize that you often do not have a choice.

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For instance, in your workplace, your supervisor or manager may require you to submit to a set of rules or regulations that you may not find comfortable. But you simply have to because you are accountable to your supervisor and manager.

Now, that is your office and there are obvious consequences for not submitting to those set rules right?

In a previous post, I wrote on accountability in business and how if you are a business owner, you have several persons aside from yourself whom you must make your business accountable to ensure the continued growth and success of your business.

That is your business, right?

Now, how about your personal life? Don’t you think that there should also be a way to hold yourself accountable for the things you need to do? Now, I am not suggesting you develop a rulebook for yourself or a constitution, far from it. But come to think of it, what harm will it cause for you to have a rulebook for yourself? Think about it for a moment.

As an individual, you must realize that if you are going to be able to live a happier and more fulfilling life, in which you get to achieve your goals, dreams and aspirations, then you must learn to take responsibility for yourself. How do you do that?

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Develop A Set Of Core Values To Live By

Your core values refer to some of the beliefs or principles that you hold of great importance to you and that you live by. To be able to take personal responsibility for yourself, you need to have a set of values you consciously set out to guide your actions and inactions.

Examples of the core values you can adopt for yourself are integrity, honesty, punctuality, reliability, responsibility etc.

Quit Excuses

Excuses are simply reasons you give to justify your failure or an obvious fault of yours. If you are going to effectively take responsibility for yourself, then you must ensure you quit excuses. Some excuses may seem justifiable, but all excuses seek to do the same thing – absolve you of every responsibility.

Let Go Of Past Failures

Past mistakes are what they are – past mistakes. Holding on to them will do you no real good except prevent you from focusing on the present and working towards the future. One thing you have to make peace with is that mistakes do happen, once in a while. Take responsibility for every past mistake and find ways to make amends in the present or build systems in place to guard against a reoccurrence.  

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Quit Blame

Another area people fail in taking personal responsibility is in apportioning blame. If you are going to be one that effectively takes personal responsibility, then you must do away with blames. Blame only transfers responsibility from you to another.

Make Yourself Accountable To Someone

The reason why we have laws and also have law enforcement agents employed is that on a normal day, an average person may not want to obey the laws. Making yourself accountable to someone will help keep you in check. Choosing to make yourself accountable to someone will help you in many ways than you can imagine.

Closing Thoughts

One of the important attributes of an adult is accepting responsibility. In your life, you must ensure you are not just an adult by age but an adult indeed too. This you do by ensuring you take personal responsibility for your life and everything that goes on in it.

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This article was first published on 11th May 2022


Ifegwu-Mbonu Victor is a Personal Growth and Leadership Trainer who provides training and coaching to individuals and organizations.

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