In a speech that I delivered earlier today at my Toastmasters Club, I used a quote that got me thinking.
The quote is from my friend and mentor Darren Lacroix, World Champion of Public speaking, 2001. He said, “As a speaker, you are 100% responsible for your success.”
And I thought, well, that can be true regardless of what line of work you are in. As a matter of fact, it is true.
I am 100% responsible for my own success, or failure.
Responsibility has gotten a bad rap in our society and has become more or less synonymous with fault, as in whose fault is it that we are in this situation.
Responsibility, as Stephen Covey points out in his classic book, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, simply means the ability to respond.
If things are not going the way you expected them to go, you can either hold others responsible (meaning blame) or choose to use your ability to respond to the situation and take corrective actions and make the necessary adjustments, so that things will turn out the way you expected them.
Or you simply “rinse and repeat,” as the saying goes, until you get the result you want of you decide that it time for a change of course. In other words, you take 100% responsibility for your actions, and as a consequence, your success or failure.
I just wrote the words, I am 100% responsible for my success on a 3×5 card and posted it on the wall in front of me.