What do you mean by Intention as a key to Responsibility?

Helen asks: “What do you mean by Intention as a key to Responsibility?”

Here’s my response.

(I borrowed and adapted this response from a small portion of Lesson 3 from the Launching Your Responsibility-Thinking Practice course.)

Intention is a mental capability that you were born with. It is an aspect of your consciousness often discussed as free will, direction, “want to,” and choice.

However, most people don’t learn to develop their power of Intention in school, and may never do so unless they get involved in personal growth, leadership development, or spiritual development programs.

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes 3 minutes to read.)

You can develop your power of Intention by learning more about it and exercising it explicitly.

Doing so accelerates:

  • finding and clearing negative conditioning, triggers, and limiting beliefs,
  • attracting what you want in life,
  • developing mental strength,
  • knowing what you want to change and making choices in that direction,
  • getting to the next level,
  • finding clarity of direction, and
  • being happy (because you are winning and not coping).

Intention is one of the three Keys to Responsibility and self-leadership. I refer to it as the winning key.

Intention – the winning key

Let’s talk about winning and losing.

Our society teaches us to focus on losing. You probably don’t even realize this. Let me illustrate.

Person 1: “How ya doing?”

Person 2: “Oh. You don’t want to know.”

Person 3: “Hangin’ on by a thread.”

Or how about (at the proverbial water cooler):

Person 4: “Did you see the latest memo?”

Person 5: “Yeah. That sucks.”

Person 6: “They’re stickin’ it to us again.”

Can you see how the responses are expressions of losing, of coping?

You would seldom (never?) hear me, my mentor, or any of my advanced students give responses like these.

Why?

We are too committed to (and practiced at) owning it.

That is, we have done the work so that we intend to always operate from feelings of freedom, choice, and power – this is the mental state of Responsibility as shown on The Responsibility Process® poster.

Through no fault of your own, you live in a cultural trance of losing and coping. So you unconsciously learned to focus on losing and coping.

(And I’m here to help you change that by changing what you pay attention to.)

To be free, powerful, and at choice, you learn to disrupt that cultural trance and stop participating in it.

In the mental state of Responsibility, we aren’t losing, and coping.

We are winning.

“Winning” doesn’t mean that someone else is losing.

Winning means that you are experiencing something that you want — that is, INTEND — to experience. You are experiencing your freedom, choice, and power — your free will, your choices.

Do you want to experience more winning in your life? Here’s something you can do right away.

Intention exercise

As soon as possible each morning, claim at least 5 wins from yesterday.

Let’s define a “win”.

A win is an intention met (or, a met intention). It is something you intended to happen and it did (or something you intended to not happen, and it didn’t).

Examples:

  • I intended to enjoy a nutritious and yummy breakfast this morning. And I did. And that’s a win.
  • I intended to serve you and the Responsibility Community today by sending this message. And I did. That’s a win.
  • I intended to operate from Responsibility yesterday every time something went wrong, and I did. Win.
  • I intended to exercise, sauna, and enjoy a cold shower yesterday afternoon. I did. That’s a win.
  • I intended to close a sale yesterday. I did, that’s a win.
  • I intended to show loving kindness and gratitude to family, friends, teammates, and even strangers yesterday. I did. That’s a win.

Claiming wins is foundational to Responsibility-thinking. Why? Doing so develops your power of Intention.

Claiming wins is a foundational practice for reconditioning the mind away from losing (and coping) and toward winning and owning it. It’s darn hard to claim wins and be in a coping state at the same time.

All of The Responsibility Company meetings start with claiming wins. And when you participate in our Responsibility Immersion and Responsibility Mastery sessions, we begin with claiming wins.

Many of my students who lead teams incorporate a Wins ritual in team meetings.

(Try it.)

So, consider turning this Intention exercise into a daily habit. You can do it before you roll out of bed, while brushing your teeth (it doesn’t have to be out loud, or written down), exercising, or whenever.

It can also be spontaneous (“Oh, I just thought of another win! I intended to X, and I did X. That’s a win.”).

In fact, I’ll claim a win right now:

You are reading this post and studying Responsibility. Win!

(Yes, I did intend it. And yes, it is happening. That’s a win.

Because I’ve developed my Intention “muscle,” I’m winning every minute of every day. And it feels great.)

And 5 is the lower limit. Some of my students claim 25 wins from yesterday before leaving bed in the morning. Now that’s starting the day as a winner!

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Is it possible to stop triggering The Responsibility Process?

Ari from Northern Europe asks

As we know, The Responsibility Process® kicks in when we face an issue that we think is a problem. The key is then to catch ourselves earlier and earlier from behaving from the coping states.

Question: Is it possible to become so professional in practicing this process that we are able to avoid the first step, which is defining the issue as a problem?

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes two minutes to read.)

I respond

The answer to your question calls on understanding the psychology of Responsibility, which is quite precise.

Yes, it is possible to stop The Responsibility Process from being triggered. However, it is from something other than repeated successful Catch Sooner.

Instead, it is from not being triggered in the first place.

How do you do that?

By not judging something as being bad or wrong — a problem.

To do that, you re-condition or re-program yourself using the three keys to Responsibility:

  • Intention – Intend to respond from Responsibility when things go wrong.
  • Awareness – Catch yourself in the coping states sooner and sooner
  • Confront – Face yourself to see what is true that you can learn, correct, or improve

These three keys are presented in detail in chapter 4 of The Responsibility Process (book). They are also illustrated in numerous articles and videos. Here’s a search worth checking out.

Want an example?

Let’s say you make a mistake in front of others. Your mental program codes that as wrong, thus triggering The Responsibility Process.

There is no one else to blame, and you reject Justify, but you land in Shame and are embarrassed. This happens over and over throughout your life until you choose to take 100% Responsibility for it.

Then, through the Intention to grow towards freedom, power, and choice; and the Awareness that there is nothing wrong with you, you successfully and completely clear the mental program (belief, idea, thought) that you shouldn’t make a mistake.

You can make a mistake and still be completely okay.

After that, you make mistakes in front of others without triggering The Responsibility Process.

That’s freeing.

Awareness is cool

In consciousness work (that’s work you do on yourself to grow in consciousness by aligning with higher truths; clearing triggers, hot buttons, and baggage; understanding your shadow side; and more), this re-programming is called “acceptance.” It means accepting things as they are and not judging them as good/bad or right/wrong.

Doing so is challenging because you are programmed (through conditioning) to rely so heavily on the concepts of good/bad and right/wrong. You are deeply conditioned — programmed — to judge everything all the time.

Responsibility Immersion participants learn how to give up good/bad and right/wrong, replacing them with constructs such as like/don’t like and want/don’t want.

Doing so makes you much more free, powerful, and at choice.

You may have encountered this line of poetry from Rumi:

“Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I’ll meet you there.”

I now from my own Responsibility practice that field is freeing.

The short story, The Old Man and His Horse, also offers a compelling illustration about seeing things as they are, without judgment, and the freedom in doing so.

So, if you want to stop triggering The Responsibility Process, start seeing more and more of your world as perfect. That’s freedom.

“The experience you are having is perfect, your role is to see its perfection.” ~ Buckminster Fuller

Ari continues the exchange

Thank you for your comprehensive answer!

So it can be said that the ultimate target for us is acceptance and The Responsibility Process acts like a “change management tool” that supports us to be more aware of our mental processes.

And maybe this “re-coding” is eventually easier for reoccurring problems when we face “the same problem” several times, but as we all know, there will be a constant flow of new issues for us…and some of them are then “problems” for us, and The Responsibility Process kicks in.

I reply again

Ari, I like and agree with your idea that practicing Responsibility works as a personal change management tool. Thank you for that.

I would not say that acceptance is the ultimate target. The ultimate target is found in the definition of Responsibility as seen on the poster:

Owning your ability and power to create, choose, and attract.

(Which results in ever increasing freedom, choice, and power.)

What does that mean?

It means you are constantly creating, choosing, and attracting your reality. You just aren’t constantly owning that you are doing so. (And that’s why taking Responsibility for your life means taking Responsibility for your crazy mind).

Acceptance is one of many powerful principles that Responsibility students become increasingly aware of.

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“It’s Liberating and Exciting that I can Just be Me”

Responsibility success stories often give me goosebumps. Especially those that report substantial life change, growth, and release.

Today’s issue is devoted to a story that came my way after the two recent newsletters on mutual blame (Why Can’t My Ex Take Responsibility? and How Do I End the Blamestorm with My Ex?).

This person is excited for me to share their story. Why?

It might help you or another reader own whatever it is that you *think* you have to keep secret.

Here’s their story.

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes a minute or two to read.)

Dear Christopher,

This newsletter is so timely. Thank you.

While I’ve been in the diaspora from the Responsibility Immersion and Responsibility Mastery community, I still am working to practice the learnings every day, and I recently had a MAJOR bout of confront leading to more awareness and clear intent.

This is deeply personal and not without pain, but I have finally allowed myself to face and bear truth to something I’ve held for a very very long time.

I am transgender. In the deepest recesses of my being, I identify as a woman.

That took me over 30 years of denial, blame, shame, and justification to embrace as “is” and start to act on it.

And it’s not without pain. My marriage is ending.

Not so much because of my embracing my truth but in response to the fact that I acted in ways that harmed those I loved:

  • I was in the justify trap,
  • I can just keep it all hidden and it will all be better,
  • I can crossdress when I’m alone or traveling,
  • I can maintain a secret social media account to connect with the trans community and explore my feminine side.

But it was lying, and it was harmful.

And it sucks — I broke trust with my best friend and my partner — with my wife. And it is ending our marriage.

And I own it.

I am responsible for my choices. And now I get to navigate the new future – where we are trying to be equitable and amicable and to build the best future for our kids as co-parents and, hopefully, over time, as friends again.

And I get to own my future as me… I am working with a therapist now to figure out the steps. Nothing concrete yet, and I’m still using “John” and “he/him/his” in most settings, but I am committed to walking this path as it is my truth.

And it’s liberating and exciting that I can just be me without hiding it and without fear.

And while it took me a long time to get there, I am grateful for my engagement in Responsibility Immersion and Responsibility Mastery and for your wonderful contributions to the body of knowledge on leadership and responsibility that helped me to get there.

This would have been a really hard message to pen even a month ago.

Now it feels empowering and liberating.

I hope that sometime soon, I will be reintroducing you to me — as Juanita Smith — a confident, powerful, free, and at-choice WOMAN ready to live and lead in her own life.

That day will come soon.

Until then, all my very best to you and yours…

John Smith

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How Do I End the Blamestorm with my Ex?

In our previous article I replied to Nate questioning why his ex doesn’t take responsibility for her actions.

Here’s a summary of my reply:

  • She can, she just doesn’t know how, or isn’t ready to (yet).
  • She has a problem and its you.
  • So she’s stuck in Lay Blame.
  • However, it looks like you have a problem too.
  • And your problem is her.
  • So where are you coming from (in The Responsibility Process)?

Then I promised to offer some thoughts about how to get out of this mutual blamestorm.

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes 1 minute to read.)

De-escalate

Conflict resolution experts would suggest that you de-escalate.

Here are some thoughts about how you might approach de-escalating.

Consider whether you want to remain a powerless victim or if you prefer to regain your freedom, power, and choice.

The ego in each of you feeds on the drama, so it is easier to blame in the short term, but that takes a tragic toll in the longer term.

If you want to de-escalate and regain your freedom, choice, and power, I can help. If you want to keep blaming, I have little to offer.

Own it.

Own your ability and power to create, choose, and attract your reality.

This is our definition of Responsibility.

Through your beliefs, filters, triggers, conditioning, and subconscious programming, you are always creating, choosing, and attracting your entire experience – good and bad.

You just aren’t always owning it.

So owning the negative experience is the first step to taking charge of it; seeing how you created, choose, or attracted it; and then changing it.

Stop blaming.

After you choose to own it, some part of you probably is ready to stop blaming.

But some part of you isn’t.

So now you have an internal dialogue.

“They did it to me!!” (Lay Blame)

“Maybe, but I allowed it.” (Responsibility)

“It’s their fault.” (Lay Blame)

“But blaming won’t change things.” (Responsibility)

A comment

Lay Blame is a super easy way to cope with a problem.

It requires the least thinking, introspection, wisdom, and zero owning it.

All it requires is the over-simplified point of view that they CAUSED your negative EFFECT.

This leads to the presumption that THEY must change for YOU to be happy.

And that’s the powerless part.

However, when you step back and look clearly at the big picture you can see that you can choose happiness regardless of what they do.

Also, it is questionable that they alone caused your negative effect. They simply did what they did. It’s your interpretation that makes it negative.

Workplace application

Since most readers of this newsletter are interested in Responsibility application in the work place, consider this:

The number one coping dynamic in the workplace is that management blames workers and workers blame management.

How convenient. Then neither has to own their role in their messes.

This coping dynamic is the first thing I address when working with an executive leader. If they insist on blaming, I can’t help them.

Why?

Because I know that the executive leader is creating, choosing, and attracting everything they are experiencing.

So, the people aren’t the real problem.

The real problem is the leader’s not owning their point of view (of Lay Blame).

After you stop

After you choose to stop blaming, you will want to watch for Justify, Shame, Obligation, and Quit. This is how you move through the states in The Responsibility Process.

You can release each.

(It’s not easy. Yet, it is always possible.

When you are deeply entangled in blamestorming, this can all be very challenging.

It helps to have a Responsibility mentor aid you in reflecting. That’s what I’m here for.)

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Why Can’t My Ex Take Responsibility?

Here’s a question I received in response to my invitations on this site, and around the web, to ask me anything about Responsibility.

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes 1 minute to read.)

Nate asks

My ex-partner doesn’t take responsibility for her actions. She blamed me and called me emotionally immature, and that’s basically why she’s my ex-partner.

What would be the reason for this? As in, why can’t a 43-year-old woman take responsibility for her own emotions?

I answer

Hello, Nate.

I’m sorry you are in this position. I’ll do my best to address your question. I hope it is some help.

You ask: “why can’t a 43-year-old woman take responsibility for her own emotions?”

She absolutely can. She just doesn’t know how to or doesn’t want to — yet (and maybe never).

But she’s not alone.

Most people aren’t very good at taking Responsibility. If we were, we’d be much happier, more free, and more powerful.

(Capital R “Responsibility” indicates our meaning of the word, which we define as owning one’s power and ability to create, choose, and attract one’s reality. You can read about this on our About page.)

In fact, you frequently don’t know when you aren’t taking Responsibility.

It takes a fair amount of growth and practice — and sometimes a loving poke from a compassionate friend, mentor, or support group — to know when you aren’t taking Responsibility.

So how do you know when you aren’t taking Responsibility?

There are two indicators:

  1. Something’s not quite right in your world. That is, you have a problem. And,
  2. you are coming at that problem from below the line.

By “below the line,” I refer to The Responsibility Process.

In the hand-drawn graphic here, see the line between Obligation and Responsibility.The Responsibility Process & Results

When we approach a problem from Lay Blame, Justify, Shame, or Obligation, then we’re not taking Responsibility.

We’re avoiding it.

In these mental states we’re sure the problem is “out there.” We’re a victim.

Thus we are powerless to solve the problem. Something “out there” has to change for our problem to resolve.

So, from your email, I sense your ex-partner has a problem.

And from her point of view (of Lay Blame), you are her problem.

(It sucks to be blamed. Again, I’m sorry for your situation.)

I could go on for pages explaining how Responsibility works in our crazy minds. However, I suggest two things.

To understand more about Responsibility, follow the links above to find lots of valuable content about The Responsibility Process and how to develop your own Responsibility-thinking practice.

You can also email me, Nate (you too Christopher), with follow-up questions.

Now, Nate, may I poke you a bit?

If you’re not up for that, stop reading.

.

It sounds to me like something’s not quite right in your world. Is that correct?

And would you say that your problem is your ex-partner’s accusations?

If so, then where are you coming from on The Responsibility Process?

(Ouch, I know.

By the way, there’s nothing wrong with you.)

Congratulations on your newfound awareness.

I’ll offer some ideas in the next post if you want to know what you can do about it.

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How do you practice Responsibility in wartime? Part 2

Recently, I had an engaging exchange with a Ukrainian life coach wanting to know if there is a special way to coach Responsibility in times of war.

This is Part 2. Read Part 1.

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes 1 minute to read.)

Anna again

Hello, Christopher.

Honestly saying today is a hard day, as today is when the war started in Ukraine one year ago. But hopefully, all will be good, and there won’t be any escalation today from the Russian side.

I hope you are doing well. I’m very grateful to you for answering my letter. That means a lot to me; I greatly appreciate your work and the personal story you’ve shared with me. It’s inspiring to see how The Responsibility Process becomes a lifestyle and can strongly influence mental health.

You understood correctly; I want to try using The Responsibility Process for coaching. I have an idea to create a supportive coaching group in the format of online meetings. And the first point that you mentioned made me think a lot this morning, as I need to practice it myself and integrate it into my everyday life. I’ve read all resources from your website and the email subscription, and thank you for sharing the link about “Stop the Freakout ”. I’ll watch those videos.

About the poster in Ukrainian – that’s so great! Thanks for doing it. And I would love to get in touch with those two ladies; possibly, we can do something together for Ukrainians.

Thank you once more very much for all your advice and support.

Have a great day!

Best wishes,

Anna Yaremenko

Me (Christopher) again

Thank you, Anna, for your prompt reply.

I hope today was not too much of a struggle for you.

About your idea of coaching groups, I will share a couple of principles, and one practice, for running Mastery Groups:

1. All participants agree to 100% Responsibility in the meeting.

That means that Denial, Lay Blame, Justify, Shame, Obligation, and Quit will invite attention and questions (with compassion, of course) from the host.

2. No advice or solutions are allowed.

People stop thinking for themselves (and owning it) once they receive advice or solutions. Instead, you work with the keys of Intention (What do you want?), Awareness (What is your attention on?), and Confront (Are you willing to face this? / May I poke you?). So, you can teach something (a new truth) to build Awareness, or you can ask questions or make statements that focus Intention and help the person Confront.

3. The invitation to work in a Mastery Group is some form of the question, “Who has something that’s not quite right in your world?”

Another version of the question is, “Whose mind keeps chewing on some issue or problem that you wish you could be done chewing on so you can free up that mental space?”

These should give you some things to think about.

Comments

While Anna mentioned “coaching group” I responded about “Mastery Groups.”

A Mastery Group, part of Responsibility Mastery (also available in Responsibility Mentoring) is the most powerful tool I know for experiencing rapid consciousness growth while developing your Responsibility practice.

The Mastery Group dives into real-life situations that participants are wrestling with in their lives, and applies Responsibility tools to solve each problem.

What makes it so powerful is the clarity of the “master” who hosts the group. The master listens to you intently and then helps you apply Responsibility-thinking to get yourself above the line, thus obliterating the problem and generating newfound freedom, choice, and power in your life.

When you participate in a Mastery Group, you experience personal breakthrough after breakthrough.

There’s nothing like it.

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How do you practice Responsibility in wartime?

Recently I engaged in a daily back-and-forth correspondence with a Ukrainian life coach, Anna Yaremenko (her real name, used with permission).

Anna wants to help Ukrainians take Responsibility for their lives during these devastating times.

In this Responsibility Answers edition, I share Anna’s call for help and my first reply. It’s lightly edited, removing some unnecessary sentences, otherwise leaving Anna’s and my words intact.

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes 1 minute to read.)

First, we hear from Anna.

Anna writes

Hello, the Responsibility Team.

My name is Anna Yaremenko, and I’m addressing this email to Christopher Avery.

I am Ukrainian and have worked as a life coach for several years. Unfortunately, due to the war in Ukraine, I have many requests from my clients, like feeling lost in life and career, losing hope, blaming others, being overwhelmed by hate around, and too much pressure and obligation because life has become so unpredictable.

I’ve learnt on your website all the available materials + emails subscription, which gave me many great ideas on using The Responsibility Process with my clients and in my life. But I want to ask you if it’s possible to share if there might be a special approach to implementing The Responsibility Process in such an uncertain stressful time as a war.

If you have had such an experience or can give me some direction, I would be very grateful.

Me (Christopher)

This request touched my heart, and I was compelled to reply. Here’s what I wrote:

I have two primary ideas to share with you.

1. You can teach and coach Responsibility only to the extent that you integrate it into your own life.

That suggests developing your own Responsibility practice now.

The more you practice Responsibility, the better you can teach and coach it. (And, to accelerate your practice, teach and coach Responsibility. It’s a virtuous cycle.)

You will grow!

It is the most foundational coaching tool that I know. The more you practice Responsibility, the more you can spot how your client’s programming (conditioning) keeps them stuck, and you can better know how to help them get unstuck.

Read a little more about this in Guidance for Teaching Responsibility.

2. People can get to the mental state of Responsibility around any problem (no matter how big).

And people get stuck below the line around even tiny problems. The Responsibility Process is the same whether problems are minuscule or gigantic.

Notice that I said “can” not “do.” The mental state of Responsibility is always available to every human around any problem. Some choose it, and many don’t.

My task as a Responsibility teacher is to hold that possibility for every student, making them more likely to choose it.

I’m inspired by people who have lost their limbs (or sight or hearing) and who completely accept it. They say, “this is an inconvenience, not a problem.”

And yes, not all people who lose limbs or senses reach that mental state. They remain bitter victims of a cruel life.

Anna, you asked about what experiences I might have had.

I’ve never lived where a war raged around me. I don’t know what it is like. Therefore, I cannot claim to know how to take 100% Responsibility for one’s life during such upheaval.

However, if I were in such a position, I know that the mental state of Responsibility would be available to me. In that state, I could either completely accept the situation or choose how to use my unique inspiration and gifts to do something about it. (I think your president is an inspiring example of this.)

While I have never been at war, I have faced severe obstacles from a position of Responsibility. One was the pandemic.

The pandemic and shutdown was the number one Justify worldwide during 2020 and 2021. I admit to freaking out for almost 24 hours when I realized that my business and life would be turned upside down.

Then I realized that the world needed our message more than ever, and I got to work serving up value. See the six “Stop the Freakout” episodes near the bottom of our resources page. (You’ll get the idea from the first one.)

I have also dealt with a serious health challenge for seven years now (it kept me in bed this morning until Noon — again). I wrote about how I choose to be bigger than this problem.

And I have provided Responsibility mentoring to many people in devastating situations, helping them break through to newfound freedom, choice, and power.

Comments

There’s a keen observation to make: It’s the size of the fear or anxiety about the situation that makes it hard to confront. That’s why Confront (that is, the ability to face) is one of the three keys to Responsibility.

Another observation is that people’s stories of Lay Blame, Justify, Shame, and Obligation are compelling. So without sufficient training and practice, coaches accept the story. They sympathize rather than help the client face and find new truth that frees them.

For more on practicing the three keys to Responsibility, see our email course Launching Your Responsibility-Thanking Practice.

TRP Poster UKRUkrainian translation!

We were going to announce the 29th language in our translation project — Ukrainian — in this edition, AND THEN I heard from Anna.

Synchronicity.

Now, how can we — the worldwide Responsibility Community — support Ukrainians?

To your freedom, choice, and power.
Christopher Avery and The Responsibility Company team

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Coping is Overrated

But you are likely an expert at it.

Why?

Because our society teaches that coping with “stuff” we don’t want is a success strategy.

(I don’t buy it.)

(This post began as a LinkedIn post. It takes 1 minute to read.)

Coping is big business too.

There are tens of thousands of titles on coping, such as “How to Cope with a Bad Boss.”

There are far fewer titles about how to replace coping with growing.

Growing what?

Awareness, higher consciousness. This results in being free, powerful, and at choice.

People who engage in a Responsibility practice find that they don’t need to cope. They prefer to be free, powerful, and at choice.

Here’s something that you can do today.

Catch yourself with thoughts, actions, and words related to coping, behavior that says

“There’s nothing I can do.”
“I just have to put up with it.”
“This is just the way it is.”

Catch yourself doing this, and then ask yourself, “For how long do I want this to be true?”

Decide that you would much rather face reality and own your life.

When you do that, your mind automatically moves you toward the ability to respond, to grow in awareness and freedom.

To your freedom, choice, and power.
Christopher Avery and The Responsibility Company team

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What if nothing’s wrong with you?

Awareness is one of the three keys to Responsibility and self-leadership.

Awareness means what your attention is on.

For instance, when in Lay Blame, your attention is on framing someone as the cause of your problem.

In Responsibility your attention is on some form of the question “what do I want about this problem that I can take ownership of?”

Awareness is cool. It’s the root to mindfulness and to developing your consciousness.

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes 3 minutes to read.)

In my Responsibility practice, awareness means that every time something in my universe isn’t quite right (and thus I’m confused, upset, frustrated, annoyed, or angry), there is an opportunity for a new awareness.

A new truth.

A greater consciousness.

So, here’s one to try on:

There’s nothing wrong with you.

What if you are operating perfectly – according to your conditioning and programming?

Here’s the point.

Most smart people learned early in childhood to be self-critical – to catch themselves in a mistake faster than their parents, siblings, or teachers could say, “what’s wrong with you?”

They learned to say, “what’s wrong with me!?” while making various gestures.

“What’s wrong with me!?” maps to Shame in The Responsibility Process.

In Shame, I’m the problem. I Lay Blame on myself for what’s not right.

Then a lifetime of self-beating and self-loathing begins.

Many Responsibility students discover – through practice – that Shame is their “favorite” place to get stuck in The Responsibility Process.

What to do about it?

Consider that you are made perfectly, and you are also operating normally.

Even though things happen that aren’t quite right.

Consider that there is nothing wrong with you. You just have your attention on “what’s wrong with me?!” instead of “Hmmm, what do I want about this situation that I can take ownership of and do something about?”

Only then can you pay attention to another new awareness – a higher truth.

You are always doing the best you know how (in each moment, given your consciousness and the context).

Try that on.

You may be thinking: I’m not sure I ALWAYS do my best.

No. That’s not what the principle says.

In hindsight, you see dozens of things that you “should” have done differently. But that hindsight was not available to you in the moment when you made the mistake or rolled your eyes or said something ugly.

So, how do you put that hindsight to work?

You could open a “Catch Sooner Game” around any habitual programming or conditioning you want to change.

I describe Catch Sooner in The Responsibility Process (book). However, I apply it with students over and over in Responsibility Immersion so it becomes a new awareness and habit.

As people advance in their Responsibility practice, they learn to stop blaming themselves because they are much more aware of their programming and their power to change it.

So you can skip past Shame on The Responsibility Process.

Then, a really cool awareness dawns on you.

If nothing’s wrong with you, there’s nothing wrong with anyone!

Everyone is always doing their best in that moment (given their consciousness and context).

When you develop that awareness, you start erasing Lay Blame from The Responsibility Process in your mind.

Then, your attention is no longer on what’s wrong with people – either yourself or others.

And you are much more powerful to respond to situations and systems with less judgment and greater awareness.

To your freedom, choice, and power.
Christopher Avery and The Responsibility Company team

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Consider joining the Responsibility Community. (It’s all-content and no-selling).

Infinite Choices

Your most frequent activity is making choices.

You just chose whether to start reading this post.

Now you are making a choice about whether to keep reading.

You might also be thinking about whether to grab a coffee.

Or scratch your nose.

(This post began as a Responsibility Community Newsletter. It takes 1 minute to read.)

When you really truly get that you have infinite choices available to you all day, every day

And that each one can create an entirely new path

Then you can sense the beginning of true freedom.

You can start to take charge of your life.

Like many, you may have been conditioned to believe that you have no choice, that you HAVE TO do this, or that you HAVE TO do that.

That your life path is paved for you, and you can’t alter it.

(Not true)

Or possibly – like so many do – you worry about “right” choices and “wrong” ones.

(Worrying is a choice)

I love these two lines from the Sufi poet Rumi, who said,

“Out beyond right and wrong is a field.

I’ll meet you there.”

That means you can let go of right/wrong, good/bad, should/shouldn’t, and choose what frees you.

The Responsibility Process teaches that Responsibility is a mental state — the mind’s coordinates for experiencing freedom, choice, and power.

It is a creative, calming, intentional, inspired, and authentic state of mind.

When you think you have no choice, that’s a good indication that you’re coping and feeling powerless.

Here’s something you can do today.

Catch yourself saying, “I have no choice.” And then tell yourself,

“I must be coping.

“Let me change that.

“Let me ascend to the mental state of Responsibility where I naturally experience freedom, choice, and power.”

I can help.

To your freedom, choice, and power.
Christopher Avery and The Responsibility Company team

Try us

Consider joining the Responsibility Community. (It’s all-content and no-selling).

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