For a few weeks I have noticed that a peer of mine was kind of going through a bit of a rough patch with her job. She expressed her thoughts on being underpaid, given less hours than she thought she deserved, and, overall... well, just feeling downright undervalued.
As I heard this peer for her concerns many times towards me I began to notice other people in my life doing a similar things. Someone expressing their frustrations to me about their phone company potentially overcharging them. Another mad because of their roommate talking loudly on the phone late at night. And then -- on top of it all -- I even saw myself frustrated over a couple things in my environment and expressing it to others as well.
When I sat back and reflected on the whole thing, I noticed that there was one common underlying thread amongst all of these situations: Each person was expressing their concerns, but not to people who could actually help them with the situation. Nobody was being proactive in their stress and frustration.
Instead, everybody was doing the safest thing a person can ever do: Express their frustrations to people who can't do anything about it. Their friend. Their partner. Their family member. When in reality the person needed to be talking to people who can help them and give them what they want: their boss, supervisor, cell phone company, roommate, or whoever.
We all get caught up in this way of being at some point or another during various periods of our lives. We are stressed and frustrated about something and rather than confront the issue head on with the people who can help us with the issue, we talk to everybody else in our lives about it.
Now, don't get me wrong -- sometimes we do need to process our experience with other people who aren't involved. However, the problem is that by talking with other people about the issue rather than those involved, it is very disempowering. It's almost as if the more people we express our frustrations with, then the more we drain our energy and the energy of those around us.
When we avoid confronting the issue head on it's like we are are subconsciously telling ourselves (and the universe), "I'm not powerful. I'm not capable. I'm not worthy. My concerns, thoughts and feelings don't matter, so I'm going to talk to many other people about it rather than confront the issue at the source so I can make changes in my life."
Doing this makes us feel out of control, weak and powerless -- the exact opposite of what we commonly desire.
So how can we get what we want in our lives? What is the mindset shift that we have to make? It is to consciously choose to take personal responsibility for ourselves in every single situation.
Taking personal responsibility involves acknowledging and accepting our own unique experience and acting accordingly to our experience. To be willing to face the world head-on and say, "I am powerful and I deserve to have what I desire."
So if we are unhappy at work, then we properly communicate to our boss or supervisor. If we are unhappy with a contract that we have made with that company, then we properly communicate with that company. If we are unhappy with a roommate, then we voice our concerns directly to that person. Not to a coworker or your neighbor who can't do anything about your situation... but a clear communication with the people there is a problem with.
To take personal responsibility also involves making decisions that are in our best interests. So if a certain job or relationship that we are in is no longer working despite our efforts at open communication, then we know that we always have the option to leave or do something different.
We all always have a choice. We all always have decisions to make. To know that we always have endless opportunities available to us is part of living truly empowered.
You are in control of your own life. You always have been and always will be. So what can you do today to feel like you are more in control of you life? What can you do today to take more personal responsibility for your life? Share it in the comments below!
This blog was originally published on JenniferTwardowski.com
Jennifer is a self and relationship coach and teacher. She helps women worldwide create fulfilling relationships with both themselves and others so they can live happy and joyful lives. Click here for her Free Self and Relationship Healing Meditation.