Let me ask you this, what does being Responsible, and Accountable mean to you? Do those words produce heaviness in your body? As an entrepreneur or a writer, do you feel the need to cover your mouth and nose, and slow your breathing? This week I offer some Fine-Tuning for Life and a Writing Meditation Tool to create Intention.
A Story from my Childhood sets the scene-
Pine, Arizona circa December 1961, my teacher Mr. Logan is ringing the recess handbell calling us back into the classroom. So what do I do instead?
I seize the opportunity to satisfy my curiosity, and I step closer to the tetherball pole. Expecting the cold, sweet sensation of a popsicle, I touch my tender pink tongue to the icy metal, and instantly I realize that the tetherball pole is not a treat, and my tongue is well and truly STUCK to it.
Daddy didn't tell me this would happen when this morning he asked me, "Doesn't the gate look sweet and frosted like the witch's cottage in Hansel and Gretel?"
I couldn't get the sweetness of that idea out of my mind. So this was my opportunity to try a taste, but "Ow! My tongue was burning!"
Two thoughts rush into my head;
#1. "It's not my fault; Daddy tricked me." (a reaction conditioned by my dad's lifelong delight in messing with my head.)
#2. "I'm going to be punished and teased forever."
Then I pull away, and a good patch of my taste buds stick to the frost-covered pole. I truly feel like an idiot.
Hey! I was only seven! Doesn't every kid stick their tongue on something frozen? Looking back, I can laugh about it, "How cute. Tiny Human experiments with perception, curiosity, and resiliency, film at eleven." (SIDE NOTE: Kiddos, "Life truly is an experiment! Have fun." Parents, "Stop shaming and blaming. If you TEACH instead, your Kiddos will internalize your words of wisdom for the rest of their lives.")
Not the last lesson I would learn in my life, I assure you!
BACK TO THE NOWTIMES- When I find myself in an uncomfortable situation, I now know that shifting the blame for my circumstances to someone else disrespects and disempowers me. I don't want that, do you? Yet we see so many people choose to blame and shame others.
Responsibility and accountability are not about Guilt or Shame. (That's what was going on when I was seven years old. I blamed my dad, plus I felt I would be in trouble for doing a "dumb thing," guilty feelings, and potentially ongoing shame.)
Let's move on to create a new paradigm for sufferers and perpetrators alike. One of the definitions of the word -accountability- is "the act or process of being moral, legal, or mentally responsible."
Shame And Guilt are not on the list! Nor should S.A.G. play a part in accepting responsibility and accountability.
What if we agree to use "Intention" as the driving force behind responsibility and accountability?
–We could say, "The world needs [XXX,] and I feel gifted to write it."
–Or, "What I wanted to create was [XXX], and I didn't do that, so now I will..."
This approach creates a world we want to live in and a consistently powerful flow no matter the circumstance!
Instead of disempowering others, "You were responsible for [this], and you failed, now take your lumps Miss Know-it-All,"
Here's how we shift toward Intention, "This is not what we intended; perhaps some adjustments are in order."
Hey, I'm the first to admit I don't have it all together. I still suffer discomfort when I feel I have failed at something I've taken on! This blog, for example- I feel accountable to you, the reader, and responsible for posting helpful content rather than some simple blah-blah self-serving opinion piece. So I wrote, re-wrote, revised, edited, read it aloud, shared it with Masterminds for feedback, and will undoubtedly continue to edit for days getting closer to what I mean bit by bit.
IF YOU FEEL UNCOMFORTABLE AT THIS POINT, PLEASE FORGIVE ME AND BREATHE! Imagine being patted on the shoulder and offered what you need.
Right now, please treat yourself to some RELIEF!
OPTIONAL RECIPE FOR CLARITY and HEALING - Enhance the healing meditation below using the soothing oils of Cardamom, Lavender, Ylang Ylang, and (very special if you can get it) Hawaiian Sandalwood!
WEAVE "INTENTION" INTO A WRITING MEDITATION-
* JUICE means Join Us In Creating Enlightenment.
Place your JUICE LIST on or near your desk, or someplace you will see it frequently! Let your words begin with the truth of where you are, and they will clear the way!
All the Best,
Judy McNutt, The Writers' Gift Mentor