Thursday, April 13, 2017

100 Day Project: Fear and Responsibility

Lately, I've been closely examining the most important relationships I have in my life. One thing I'm consistently noticing is my challenge to take responsibility in the interactions I have with those people. That is, I find it so much easier to either:

1) blame someone in an interaction or at the very least;
2) tell them how they could have better approached the situation!

It takes dedicated commitment to really see a situation from all angles, not just my own. And I'm not just taking about conflicts, but simple day to day conversations.

To truly see a situation from all angles, it requires building the capacity to hold our emotions; when we're overwhelmed by our own emotions it narrows our ability to see things clearly. And we unconsciously start to live by this statement:

I can only see what I feel.

Unfortunately for us (and especially the person we're interacting with!), that isn't accurate representation of reality. Now experiencing and acknowledging emotions is one thing, but it's also important to see they work to protect the ego. After all, the ego never wants to admit that it is wrong.

Taking responsibility often results in acknowledging to another person that we need to change a habit or outlook that has been ingrained in us. That's confronting! And when we are confronted by something, that can evoke fear.

So what do we do about it? In my own life, a few things have helped me. I still struggle to do them, but when I can, my interactions with my loved ones become so much richer and deeper:

1) In the instances where I am called out on something, I try to not become automatically defensive.
2) I speak about my fear and my resistance/inability to make the change that is required.
3) I ask for help from that person in a very specific and tangible way that doesn't differ all responsibility to them!

What do you do when the fear of change prevents you from taking responsibility? Please share your thoughts and realizations in the comments below!