The Power of Choice
You are responsible for your actions.
This principle seems simple enough. Yet, it also looks so esoteric that I often get shot down every time I bring it up.
Every individual is responsible for the consequences of their actions. Good consequences (yay!) AND bad consequences (boo ...).
As I said - seems simple, right?
I bust my ass, eat healthy and workout, start a business, eventually find the girl of my dreams ... I did that. I made it happen. Go me. The CEO of Team Awesome strikes up another victory on the chessboard of life.
Yet, to quote my favourite Al Pacino movie - there's a flip side to that coin.
Let's say I get fired, my business folds, and my girlfriend leaves me.
Screw my boss, I'm better than him. The market beat down my business, it's not my fault. My girlfriend cheated on me - that unloyal sod never showed me respect.
Hang on a second ...
So we're all happy to party like it's on sale for $19.99 when we're winning. But when the music stops and the party's over, you won't hang around to clean up your mess? And yet you still think you're an intelligent human being?
Now I'm no expert, but sirens and alarms are going off on Mt Olympus every time I hear this steaming pile of hypocrisy.
And hey, I'm not immune to it either.
When the music stops, that little whiney voice in my head cries out "it's not my fault!" too. But then the ferocious bark of my section corporal at Kapooka lunges in for the kill.
"OWN YOUR SHIT, RECRUIT DYMOCK!"
So, my boss fired me? "The injustice of it all", whiney Tony cries. No, I spent too much time on Instagram, oogling cat photos, browsing up and down looking for my next hit of dopamine. That's on me, my boss did the right thing.
So, I built my business on Instagram, and their new algorithm brought my income to nothing. "The depravity", baby Tony murmurs to himself. No, own it. I constructed my fortress inside someone else's moat. Can't blame them for burning the drawbridge.
My girlfriend left me for Channing Tatum. "My arms are bigger than his ..." wounded Tony sobs into his pillow. No, I should have been a better boyfriend. I wasn't there for her, and she found someone who could provide what I couldn't. That's on me.
What's that you're crying about? "But it's out of my control, I couldn't do anything!" That may be the case. The Gods dealt you a bad hand. But if you choose to seek solace at the bottom of a bottle, that's on you. Don't cry that life's holding you back.
Winners own the consequences, for better or worse.
I've had my fair share of addictions, depressions, losses, and failures. Seriously - what the hell is crying about it and being a victim going to achieve? No-one is coming to save me.
"OWN YOUR SHIT, RECRUIT DYMOCK!"
Our lives are so damn good, especially here in Australia. We don't have to worry about bombs going off, or getting shot in the street, or where our poo goes when we flush the toilet. I type this while drinking a bottle of water I filled from the tap. Life is brilliant.
Take stock of everything good that happens to you, and be grateful for it every day. Own your successes and step up.
And be grateful for all the failures and defeats, and let them make you a stronger person.
Stop blaming your dog for pissing on the carpet, be a better owner.
Stop blaming the boomers for your financial troubles, and start making bank.
Stop stuffing your face, and get your ass in the gym.
Stop thinking you're a special snowflake, the world doesn't owe you shit.
Recommended Reading - Adopting extreme ownership is an ego sucking exercise the Army drilled into me as an 18-year-old. Extreme Ownership is a book by ex-Navy Seal Jocko Willink, a man I've never met but a man I have a deep respect for. His book reiterates everything the Army taught me about being a powerful human being. Get after it.