Responsibility isn’t always a word that we associate with happiness or fun.
To be honest, it sounds a lot like work—and the truth of the matter is that it is.
Responsibility is hard work. And radical self responsibility is no exception.
What exactly is radical self-responsibility?
It’s best defined as the act of taking full and all-encompassing responsibility for all of the vital foundational infrastructures of your life—to the extent that you take full ownership for all of the good and bad that you experience.
Now, it’s absolutely true that some things in life are beyond our control.
It’s also true, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that there’s only so much in this life that we have control over.
However, radical self-responsibility speaks to the practice of taking ownership over the important things in our life that we have the power to take ownership over.
On one hand, if someone gets laid off from work, they might be tempted to sink into a depression, feel sorry for themselves, collect unemployment, and hope that the job will call them back before their benefits expire, or before their life falls to ruin.
At first glance, this obviously appears as an easier option, both in terms of effort and in terms of mental energy.
However, this is also the option that’s least likely to produce favorable results for that person’s life.
By contrast, if this person, upon being laid off of their job, determines to themselves:
“No, I’m not going to just sit at home and collect unemployment benefits. I can’t afford to do that. I’m going to immediately update my resume and take full responsibility for the situation by applying for as many replacement jobs as possible.”
Well, the individual who takes responsibility for the situation as described in the latter option definitely won’t have an easier go of it in the short term. In fact, they may get even busier and put in more work and effort than they would have had they not gotten laid off.
They’re going to apply a great deal of physical, mental, and emotional work toward bettering their circumstance.
However, in the words of chemist Louis Pasteur:
“In the fields of observation, chance favors only the prepared mind.”
And if this individual continues to take such radical self-responsibility for their situation, they’re that much more likely to succeed, land a replacement job, and end up happy and successful—as opposed to depressed and stressed about money and employment in the long term.
Now, it isn’t always this black and white. Life is anything but simple. And these issues can get very complicated very quickly.
However, the concept still stands as incredibly beneficial.
If we want to make the most of our lives, and achieve the greatest levels of health, wellness, and happiness possible—then it’s in our best interest to take radical, full responsibility for our own decisions and experiences in life, and to make whatever decisions (and to apply whatever effort we deem necessary) to move from where we are now to where we want to be.
This truly applies to every facet of life—from health, to wellness, to our professional lives, to our hobbies, to our family life, and even to our extended relationships.
Self-responsibility simply makes our lives better, even though it isn’t necessarily always the easiest option.