Accountability

accountablility

This seems to be an issue for a lot of people … not only being accountable for your words, actions, and the decisions you make, but being accountable particularly when you make a poor choice or mistake.  By far, the one previous post of mine that gets the most views is one of the first ones I wrote called “Owning Your Mistakes,” which gets viewed just about every week.  It makes me wonder if people are researching the topic because they are looking to improve their own accountability or are tired of dealing with people around them who aren’t accountable, or maybe both.

It is so easy to blame anything and everything that goes wrong on anyone but yourself, but it is a sign of maturity when you can accept responsibility for your words and actions.  On the flip side, it can be easy to take credit when something good happens, but being humble and not needing to be the center of attention is a sign of maturity as well.  We need to be responsible for ourselves in all situations and understand that while sometimes we are reacting to the circumstances and people around us, we need to be accountable for whatever we do or say, good or bad.

When you are late somewhere, forget to do something, or behave in a disrespectful manner, you shouldn’t look for ways to blame it on others or lie to cover it up.  When someone points out something you did that was hurtful or wrong in some way, you shouldn’t turn it around and try to make the person telling you look bad for pointing it out.  Obviously, other people can get under our skin and push our buttons sometimes and we can respond emotionally, but we are still accountable for whatever we do or say.  As the quote above says, we need to take ownership of our own lives.  Not only is it a sign of maturity, but it is a big part of integrity as well.

I don’t think kids today are getting as good of an example of what it means to be accountable, since so many adults don’t seem to understand the concept.  It’s one of those things we need to model for our kids though so they don’t have to learn the hard way what happens when you aren’t.  I know I get very annoyed with adults who don’t take responsibility for their own actions and come across like they are very immature.  I end up not trusting anything they say when I know they are always trying to get away with something or get out of doing something, or any number of other things.  If kids are raised in an environment where people take responsibility for their choices, then hopefully it is much more likely that trait will become inherent and they won’t have to undo poor habits later in life that they’ve learned growing up.  I just wish more people would make a conscious effort to be more accountable for themselves.

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