Always take responsibility

Everything that happens to you is your fault. Always!

E.g., when you’re a team leader, and your team fails, because “someone messed up, then it’s not that “someones’” fault - it’s your fault. If anyone in your team messes up - that means you messed up, not the individual. You, as a leader, failed to make sure that everyone does their part.

Two ex-Navy Seals Jocko Willink and Leif Babin, have written an excellent book called “Extreme Ownership,” in which they discuss that kind of responsibility. They call it… well… you guessed it: “extreme ownership.” I highly recommend checking it out. One of the best books I’ve read in 2019.

They talk about it from the perspective of leadership, but I like to think that this can be applied to situations where you’re not leading anyone - if it’s just you. But even then, you can say that you are your own manager.

E.g., if someone cuts you off in the traffic so suddenly that you don’t have the time to break and, as a consequence, crash into that car, you can only blame yourself. It’s your fault.

Now, you might be thinking, why would anyone on Earth do such a thing? Our ego is definitely not going to be happy to take the blame in such a situation.

Here’s why.

If you tell yourself that you should’ve paid more attention, should’ve been more aware of the other cars and/or should’ve left home earlier, you’re essentially saying that you’re in full control of your life and of everything that happens around you.

This creates a positive effect on your self-esteem. You are helping to build a growth-mindset and banish the victim mentality.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you start lying about facts. The facts stay the same - the responsibility shifts.

People who always blame others have the mentality of a victim. They take the stance that the world is against them, and they can’t change their lives and make decisions. Everything is decided for them. This is not the mindset you want to have.