Rights and Responsibilities

Rights and Responsibilities (Video)

We all have rights.  With these rights, however, come responsibilities.

For example, we have the right to our opinion.  We have the right to voice our opinion.  Remember the First Amendment?  Freedom of Speech?  We legally have this right.  We also have a responsibility to voice our opinion while respecting others.  For example, if we state what we think of someone’s actions, that is generally better than attacking the person and calling names.  Keep in mind, too, that others have a right to voice their opinions, and to have different opinions than we do.

We have the right to the professional life we want.  With that comes the responsibility for gaining the knowledge and skill to enter that profession or career.  We are responsible for gaining additional knowledge and skills as necessary.  If we want to be promoted, we are responsible for working to the level necessary to advance.

We have the right to the personal life we want.  We are responsible for making that happen.  If we want good relationships with people, we need to work at it.  Great relationships do not just happen.  Of course, the other person needs to take responsibility as well.  If he/she does not, maybe the relationship is not worth maintaining.  Keep in mind that something as simple as happiness is our responsibility.  It is not anyone else’s responsibility to make us happy.

If we want a house, car, land, vacations, and all the other things that money can buy, we are responsible for earning the money to purchase them.  No one else is responsible.  If we are not willing to work for it for ourselves, why should anyone else want to make the sacrifices to give it to us?

When we accept responsibility for our decisions, actions, and lives, then we can truly accept the rights we have.  Are you taking full advantage of your rights by taking full responsibility for your life?

There is No Reality, Only Perception

No Reality, Only Perception (Video)

We have all heard the phrase, “There is no reality, only perception.”  The world is to each of use what we perceive it to be.  Some people perceive the world to be wonderful and others perceive it to be horrendous.  How we perceive our lives becomes our reality.  How we perceive ourselves becomes our reality.

It seems to me that when it comes to self-perception, there are three types of people.

There are those who do not give themselves enough credit.  They do not think they are that good or that worthy.  They focus on their failures.  If this sounds like you, try focusing on your strengths and talents.  You may be a much better person, and much better at what you do, than you think.

There are also those who create a perception about themselves that is much better than what others have of them.  They may do this to make themselves feel good about themselves, to justify past actions, or to avoid looking too closely at who they really are.  If this might be you, consider being honest with yourself.  If there are things in your life that you want to improve, you cannot make good decisions with faulty information.

And then there are those individuals who have a pretty accurate perception of themselves.  They see their faults and work to overcome them rather than letting the faults define who they are.  They see their strengths and accomplishments and take credit for their hard work and persistence.  If this is you, congratulations!

Which type do you think you are?  Are there any changes you would like to make in your perception of yourself?

Rip off the Bandage

Rip off the Bandage (Video)

When I was a child and got hurt, Mom would clean the wound, put on antibiotic, and put a bandage on the wound.

When the time came to take the bandage off, I never wanted to do it.  I knew it would hurt.  So I would try to take it off slowly and carefully.  I would still hurt a little, and would continue to hurt for as long as it took me to take off the bandage.  I could prolong this process for a very long time.

Dad would say, “Just rip it off.  Get it over with.”  I finally tried it.  It hurt!  But it did not hurt for long.  It certainly did not hurt for as long as it did when I slowly tried to peel it off.  If there was a way to measure the acuity and length of pain for both processes, there was probably less pain with ripping it off.

In life, we will always be faced with painful situations, painful decisions.  We can take action by “ripping off the bandage.”  Or we can delay making a decision, delay taking action.  Although the first may be more painful at the moment, the total amount of pain will probably be less than delaying.

Do you have any “bandages” that you have been slowly trying to remove?  Do you have relationships that need to be addressed, or maybe ended?  Do you have a job that you need to leave?   Would it be better if you just “ripped off the bandage,” faced the pain, and moved on?

You Can Lead a Horse to Water…

Lead a Horse to Water (Video)

We have all heard the phrase, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.”  There are two points I would like to make about this statement.

If you are the “handler,” you cannot make the horse drink.  You can lead it to water and do everything to encourage the horse to drink, but you cannot force it to do so.  In the same way, you can provide information, education, resources, assistance, and encouragement to others, but you cannot make them learn and you cannot make them change.  It has to be their decision to learn and change.

There may come a time with you need to decide that it is just not worth trying to get someone to “drink” any more.  You may decide that your time and effort is better spent where it will make a difference.

Let’s look at this from a different perspective.  What do you do when you are the “horse?”  If someone leads you to water, do you drink?  If someone is offering you information, education, resources, assistance, and encouragement, do you learn and change?  Or do you refuse?  Why?

If you can determine the real reasons you do not want to learn and change when given the opportunity, you may discover the hurdles that are reining you in from achieving the professional and personal success that you desire.