The Hard Truth Is… It’s All Your Fault

Dear Reader,

First off, I would like to wish you a Happy New Year. 2020 is your year!

“It’s Not My Fault.”

If you’ve ever had children of your own, you’ve probably heard this phrase more than a time or two…

It’s not their fault that the trash didn’t get taken out on time. It’s not their fault that they got into a scrap with their brother or sister. It’s not their fault that their homework didn’t get turned in. It’s not their fault that they got a bad grade on a test.

This is a pretty normal thing for young children to say. Learning to take ownership of their actions and mistakes is part of the growing up process.

If only everyone learned this lesson in childhood, they’d be much better off.

However, not everyone does.

In fact, it might be a lesson you need to work on yourself!

I’m about to say what is probably the most wildly unpopular thing I’ve ever said in these daily issues

No matter what happens, no matter the situation, it is your fault in at least some small capacity.

Let me explain…

Take Ownership

You must accept ownership for the things that happen in your life.

Obviously, there are a few extreme examples where this doesn’t apply.

For example, if you’re walking down the sidewalk and a bus hops the curb and runs you down, there’s very little you could have done differently in that situation.

Barring that, though…

Everything else actually is your fault. It’s all up to you.

This is an unpopular thing to say because people don’t want to accept responsibility for what goes on in their lives. It’s an uncomfortable idea that they have some part to play in the bad things that happen.

The funny thing is everyone wants credit for the good stuff that happens in their lives. If you get a promotion, obviously that’s because of all your hard work. If you find a beautiful spouse to marry, obviously that’s because you’re quite the catch yourself, right?

Well, the opposite is true, too.

It’s All on You

If you’re single and unhappy about it, you need to take a hard look at yourself. What areas of your personality, appearance, or situation would need to change in order to not be single anymore?

If you’re stuck in a low level position and you hate it, what about your situation do you need to take responsibility for? Could you improve relations with your supervisor? Might you need to stay longer hours and dig in a little harder?

Perhaps you need to go back to school and get some additional certification so you’ll be in more attractive candidate.

Yes, it’s true. Everything in your life – good and bad – is your fault.

The good news, however, is that once you understand this concept, you can also take ownership for what goes on in your life.

If something’s bad, it is up to you to change it. But that also means you have the ability to change it.

Once you have a grasp on the idea that it’s up to you to change it, you have empowered yourself to make any and all necessary changes happen.

What about the things that seem to be out of your control, though? What if you’re a manager and your team isn’t living up to your expectations? How can you create that change?

The answer is through a concept called Extreme Ownership…

Which just so happens to be the title of the book my good friend and mentor Jocko Willink wrote.

Jocko Willink

Jocko is a former Navy SEAL Lieutenant Commander, and no one knows better than him the price of extreme ownership. He also knows the effects of taking extreme ownership.

Jocko Willink

He related a story about when he led his men into a battle that was not just unsuccessful – it was a disaster.

There was an all-out firefight and many men were injured.

Reflecting on the catastrophe, Jocko could have blamed this on a variety of extenuating factors. It was very likely that whoever was at fault would get fired – spectacularly.

Instead of passing the blame, however, Jocko knew that as the senior man on the field, everything that happened was up to him.

So he went to his senior officers and told them that only he was to blame – knowing full well he could expect a reprimand or worse.

Instead of the harsh disciplinary action he expected, however, he was congratulated for his strength of character.

In the end, he wasn’t admonished at all and his men respected him more than ever for standing up and taking responsibility.

See, they knew that when the chips were down, he would stand up for them time and time again. This improved their relationship, building trust and faith.

From then on, rather than giving in and letting Jocko take on all the hard aspects of the job, his men stood up because they didn’t want to disappoint him. When he led by example and took responsibility, his men followed suit.

They, too, began to take extreme ownership.

How Are You Going to Carry Yourself?

Now, chances are good you’re not a Navy SEAL Lieutenant Commander, but there are definitely areas in your life where you can learn from this example.

You can take extreme ownership of what goes on in your life and you can make changes for the better.

In what areas of your life are you called to be a leader?

Are you the leader of your household or your family?

Are you the leader at work perhaps as a manager of a team or as the guy who works hard to make every situation better?

Maybe you’re a leader in other areas of your life such as in a church family or friend group…

In any of those areas you can take extreme ownership and begin not only to grow and better yourself but to influence the growth of others as well.

The next time you start to fall into the trap of, “It’s not my fault” – like “it’s not my fault my boss is a jerk”, “it’s not my fault the taxman wants so much money”, “it’s not my fault real estate prices have gone down in my area”… or any similar scenario in which you would have passed the buck in the past…

Instead, ask yourself;

“What can I do differently? How can I change the situation? If everything that happens to me is my fault, how do I own it and change it for the better?”

When you begin to live this way, you will see returns in every area of your life.

So stand up take extreme ownership and become the person you are meant to be.


Brian Rose

Brian Rose
Editor, Brian Rose Uncensored

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Brian Rose

Brian Rose is an MIT graduate, with a degree in engineering. Upon finishing school, he immediately began working on Wall Street. An advanced technical trader, Brian was trading a book of $100 million at the age of 22. He spent years on Wall Street, working in New York, Chicago and London. He made millions, but...

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