It’s all your fault!

I am responsible for myself and my growth. I own my actions. I take the responsibility of outcomes. Decide – Make tough choices and expand or live in cocoon of stale blame games.

We’ve all been in situations where we felt like we were treated unfairly. Whether it’s the referee making a wrong call against your team or it’s your coach putting you on the bench in the favor of a (seemingly) worse player or a club you try out for doesn’t pick you, even though you felt you were good enough.

Situations like these come up again and again in our lives. And most of the time we handle them poorly. We feel hurt, we get angry and we blame everyone and environment but ourselves. If only we knew that the quality of our lives is directly related to how we react in these moments. And that we always have the chance to take two steps forward after taking that one step back.

The alternative to feeling sorry for yourself or complaining about the coach is to take full responsibility for it and own it. Every time you’re complaining about someone or something, you’re effectively giving up control to outside forces. Like if you say, “My coach never plays me because he likes another player more.”, you’re essentially telling yourself that no matter how much you train / how good you get, you will never play. How motivated will you be on Monday morning to put in an extra workout at the gym? Probably not very much, which means you’re only hurting yourself.

Instead, you could be saying to yourself, “It’s my fault that I’m sitting on the bench. My coach must have good reasons. I should ask him what I need to improve to start more matches.” This will immediately move the control from your coach to yourself. And you can make even more improvements, than if everything was easy and you would be starting every match.

U.S. Navy Seal, Jocko Willink, explains the concept of taking complete responsibility for everything in your life, in his book : Extreme Ownership

Now, I’m fully aware that there are situations where people deliberately try to hurt you, no matter how much you work on yourself and try to get better.   Should you find yourself in such a situation, then don’t complain. Take responsibility again and put yourself into a better environment (e.g. another club) for improvement. Taking full responsibility is something that only very few people on this earth do. Mainly because it’s so difficult for us to overcome our hurt egos when we find ourselves in tough situations. Like with everything it takes a lot of practice. But every time you’re able to make the tough (but right) choice to be the bigger person, you open yourself up to more success than you could ever imagine. And people will start looking at you as a true leader. The choice is yours, do you want to live your life as a victim or a leader?