Have you ever failed a test because you didn't study? Maybe you were not able to wear a certain outfit because you didn't do your laundry or had to skip going out with friends because you didn't do your chores.
These may be painful situations when they are happening but if you learn from them you are on your way to becoming a responsible person.
Your role on how to be a responsible teen and adult.
Having responsibility is the duty or obligation to act. Taking responsibility is acknowledging and accepting the choices you have made, the actions you have taken, and the results they have led to. True autonomy leads to both having responsibility and taking responsibility. Taking responsibly is fulfilling your role in life. Responsibility is an essential element of integrity; it is the congruence of what you think, what you say, and what you do. Responsibility is essential for reciprocity, trust, and for maintaining relationships.
Having a duty or obligation to act
Acknowledging and accepting the choices you have made, the actions you have taken, and the results they have led to.
Able to meet commitments made to yourself and others
Keeping the promises you make.
Doing everything you say you will do, or have lead others to expect from you. Do what you say!
Responsibility is a Choice
Responsibility is a choice. Whenever we think, decide, choose, and act we are exercising our personal responsibility. Deciding to accept responsibility for our choices increases the range of choices considered acceptable by others. We always have more responsible and less responsible options to choose from.
Here are examples of choices we have:
More Responsible/Less Responsible
Facts, realism, reality, and learning what is. Inquiring, investigating, seeking, and embracing facts and truth. Reason and sanity. Fantasy. Avoiding reality; embracing fantasy or magical thinking. Denying or escaping reality.Creating rumors. Rejecting facts.
Thinking through alternatives and consequences. Relying on habit or taking the easy way.
Clear and consistent thinking and expression. Obscurity, vagueness, hedging, inconsistency, waffling.
Learn from history.Revise, ignore, or dispute history. Seeking out expertise.Dismissing expertise.
Working to understand. Whatever
Self-discipline. Impulse control. Behaving true to your values. Saying “yes” to your values and “no” to the rest. Acting on impulse. Going along with whatever. Situational ethics.
Do what you say Do whatever.
Fulfill obligations. Evade obligations. Cheat.
Open to new ideas and information. Curious. Wise. Closed to new ideas. Stubborn and closed minded. Ignorant.
Willing to accept blame for errors. Infallible, arrogant, dismissive, obstinate.
Consistent, congruent, and reliable. Inconsistent, chaotic, unreliable.
Rationality, valuing reason, respect for facts, and valid logic. Gathering, validating, and studying evidence. Developing and applying a coherent theory of knowledge. Fallacies, distortions, assumptions, misinformation, and unrepresentative data.
Considering a variety of points-of-view. Accepting a one-sided view.
Adaptation and flexibility. Adjusting beliefs and actions to accommodate newly understood facts Rigid and misfit. More/Less Responsible
Competence - Manipulation.
Autonomy. - Dependence.
Courage. - Cowardice.
Seeking solutions. - Assigning blame.
Integrity - Betrayal.
Awareness and wisdom. - Unawareness and ignorance.
Adherence to evidence, values, and choice. - Blind obedience.
Participant. - Bystander.
Entitled to my own opinion. - Entitled to my own facts.
Talking to people. - Talking about people.
Adults act responsibly, children do not, regardless of how long they may have lived. Adults:
Control impulses and act deliberately according to their values, well chosen beliefs, and long termgoals,
Consider the needs of others and the community, not only themselves,
Are generous rather than selfish, kind rather than cruel, gratified, not greedy,
Are comfortable with complexity, doubt, and ambiguity, they are not quick to judge,
Control their emotions and don't tolerate tantrums, anger displays, self-indulgence, and violence,
Are emotionally competent and apply a robust theory of knowledge,
Integrate experiences and information to act rationally, consistently, and reliably rather than unpredictably, inconsistently, irrationally, and erratically. Adults are stable, even tempered, and non-volatile.
Are patient and consider the long term, not only this fleeting moment,
Speak with candor and don't tell lies, speak disingenuously, or mislead,
Are trustworthy, not manipulative; respect others and play by a fair set of rules. Children often cheat and expect to win at any cost.
Choose wisdom over ignorance,
Value reason over power, the pen over the sword,
Confront problems and transcend conflict, rather than deny and avoid problems, instigate quarrels, become vindictive, or seek revenge,
Accept responsibility for their actions, admit mistakes, accept their share of the blame, and apologize to others,
Accept and assimilate facts, rather than dismiss, distort, ignore, spin, self-justify, or fantasize,
Maintain a balanced perspective; adults tolerate trivial transgressions while courageously upholding the most vital principles,
Attain an authentic humility and keep their egos in check.
Are authentic, not phony,
Are autonomous, competent, and value their interdependence with others,
Are helpful, not helpless.
Are sober, not strung-out,
Enjoy fun, but never at the expense of others.
Take responsibility to act your age.
Children choose easy over hard, simplistic over complex, and fast over slow. But significant contributions are often difficult, complex, and slow to achieve. Forego the cheap thrills to achieve satisfaction and significance. You are a competent, autonomous adult. You are fully responsible for all your words and actions, as are other competent adults; it is time to put away childish things.
A Central Role Many emotions reflect how we attribute responsibility. We are especially quick to assign blame, often attempting to dispose of our loss. Here are examples of emotions related to attributing responsibility:
Assigning responsibility for a loss is the definition of blame.
Shame results from taking personal responsibility for not meeting your own expectations.
Guilt results from taking personal responsibility for not meeting another's expectations.
Revenge and resentment seek to hold others responsible and accountable for your loss.
You accept responsibility for causing another's loss when you apologize to them.
Forgiveness frees others from responsibility for your future well-being.
Hate blames the enemy and holds them responsible for your troubles.
Sadness turns into anger if you blame someone for your loss.
You feel betrayed if someone does not meet the responsibilities you expect of them.
Compassion turns into contempt if you blame the person and hold them responsible for their hardships.
Reciprocity acknowledges our responsibility for maintaining symmetry in relationships.
Autonomy is taking full responsibility for your own decisions