Is it me? Or is there an epidemic of people not wanting to be accountable? Am I the only one who hears people complaining about how everyone else is not being accountable? Whether it’s at work, at home, with our elected officials or our friends – people seem to be quick to blame anyone and/or everyone else for what’s not working.
Whether it’s the executive who says, “You didn’t tell me I should communicate with my people on this project,” Or the male family members who say, “You didn’t tell me to put the seat down on the toilet…” (sorry guys). Take a listen to the people around you or listen to the news. Who’s being accountable for what they’re saying and doing?
Harry Truman, our 33rd president, used to say, “The buck stops here.” Now it’s like people are saying, “It’s not my buck!”
Frankly I’m tired of hearing all the blaming and excuses. It’s exhausting and depressing.
It’s a brand new year. 2019. Can you believe it?
If you really want to have a remarkable year, consider that being intentional and taking accountability for your thoughts, words and actions could totally transform your life in remarkable ways.
Want To Be Happy?
I recently read a terrific book called How We Choose To Be Happy by Rick Foster and Greg Hicks.
Here are excerpts from that book that can transform your life. If you want more peace of mind, more joy, and greater happiness, consider this:
There’s a reason that intention is at the center of the wheel of happiness. In our research and subsequent work with individuals and groups, intention is the force behind all happiness.
Here’s why: Unlike most forces in our life that are out of our control, our intention is fully in our control. In other words, we can’t always choose our circumstances, but we can choose our attitude and reaction to things around us.
Unfortunately, in today’s chaotic world, most of us fail to capitalize on that reality, and instead stumble from one activity to the next on autopilot – all because we are unaware of our intentions.
Whether we are aware of them or not, our intentions are driving the show. Minute by minute, they are the internal messages we give ourselves that dictate what we say, how we say it and how we see things.
This is why the happiest people in the world consciously set their intention before each event of the day. They understand that they have the power to choose a focus for each experience. And what they focus on is happiness.
When we began our research, we had some preconceived notions about what makes people happy. We fully expected happy people to tell us about loving relationships, having a good job and financial security.
But something odd happened.
We didn’t hear anything about relationships or careers or money. Most people began the interview by telling us about one central theme – their determination to take full control of their lives. This is what we call “accountability.”
Accountability is how intention comes to life if intention is an inner-driven desire to play in the ball game of happiness, accountability is its natural outcome – the urge to step up to the plate and hit the ball.
The word accountability can be misleading. Many of us associate it with being “called to account.” This interpretation is full of “should” – mandates delivered from on high.
The brand of accountability that happy people talk about is quite different. It is the feeling that we are in charge of our own lives and no one else has power over us.
It is the assumption that no matter what life presents we have the ability to move ahead – do something good for ourselves, to make a difference, to have an effect.
Happy people don’t see themselves as victims, even under the most difficult circumstances. The focus is on finding solutions to their problems and looking for what they can do to make their lives better.
Accountability v Responsibility
There is a difference between accountability and responsibility. Although accountable people are responsible, responsible people are not necessarily accountable.
Responsible people do all that is required of them – they pay their bills, take out the garbage, raise the kids, go to work and follow the rules. In short, they are good citizens and we admire them.
But that doesn’t mean they’re happy. Especially if along the way they’re blaming the boss, complaining about the kids and allowing external events to control the direction of their lives.
Being responsible is important but when we are accountable, we forge ahead, improving the quality of our lives by becoming proactive rather than reactive. We create our own circumstances, rather than allowing circumstances to dictate to us.
What do you want for 2019 and beyond?
I invite you to write your intentions for your work, your family, your health and well-being, then align your choices with those intentions. You’ll be much happier and people will like being around you a whole lot more!
Marty Stanley, CSP, is a national speaker, author and consultant on personal and organizational change. Her intention is to help people get out of B.E.D (Blame, Excuses and Denial) and have more joy and freedom because they’re accountable! Call Marty today if you want 2019 to be a transformational year! 816-695-5453 firstname.lastname@example.org www.alteringoutcomes.com
To see a short video on Marty’s consulting services click here.