How do you practice Responsibility in wartime?

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.


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.


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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