Yesterday, I made a mistake at work and totally forgot to acquire an agreed upon resource for one of my wonderful students.
Work relationships, like all relationships that you decide to invest in emotionally, give you the opportunity to address familial and chronic distresses and “not good enoughs”.
We can decide to speak up or remain quiet and hopefully exit a situation unscathed and unnoticed.
I will apologize for the forgotten agreement.
After the apology, I will move on and highlight to myself all the good that I have provided for this student and the sixty others I have sworn to support and encourage.
2016 will be my year of taking responsibility. I will not blame, whine or point fingers.
I will not look for things to fear nor someone to blame.
I will make sure that I have all the information I need to make a great decision, then make one and deal with the consequences.
My year of taking full responsibility means I will not agree to things I have no desire to partake in nor agree to things I am uneasy about simply to spare the feelings of another.
On New Year’s Eve, there was an opportunity to allow someone to defile my home or speak up and stop it.
I chose to speak up.
Knowing that I have he right to speak up despite how anyone feels is a great undertaking and one hell of a drug.
My year of full responsibility is multi-faceted.
Primarily, I am committed to three things: courage, curiosity and stellar communication.
Recently I began living from courage and urgency and my life exploded in many ways.
I bought my first home.
I tore into my day job like the beast that I am and started handling the financial aspect of my newly married status like a pro.
There is no way to take full responsibility without being courageous.
When I have decided that cowardice was a wiser(easier) choice, I felt like shit.
There is nothing worse than regret.
Choosing inaction makes you feel like a coward.
As a bright Seventeen-year-old, I dreamt of an education and passionate learning environment that was Columbia University.
When no one supported this life vision, I simply did what was expected and justified the decision constantly.
Attending an all black, small, liberal arts institution in the South in the 80’s as a gay man was one hell of a decision that brought all kinds of oppressive and vile shit into my life.
Between the homophobia, class issues and constant fear of being outed, there also was the issue of not being challenged to look at things critically.
When you are being indoctrinated into the black, heterosexual, bourgeoisie middle class, there really is no time for taking responsibility outside of any arena that will not secure or improve your social standing in the aforementioned arena.
What could my life have been like had I taken full responsibility for my sexuality (coming out), risked being shunned and figured out how to make it financially without the assistance of people more frightened by life than I was and more committed to the status quo ?
The deadliest thing you can ever do is allow people to make life decisions for you or have any say in what you need or should be doing.
Rather than sitting around indulging in pre-determined life assignments, it is more dangerous to tear out and believe that you will figure shit out and self adjust.
bell hooks in her latest books on education encourages us all to become lifelong self-directed learners.
In this process danger is always afoot. Danger of not knowing. Danger of looking like a fool. Danger of having to continue despite brutal and real obstacles.
Real danger is never challenging yourself or finding out how far you can go in your career, in your relationships, in your life.
As you age, being dangerous is both inevitable and highly avoidable.
Most of us are already dead and just haven’t crawled into our graves yet.
Take full responsibility and watch miracles unfold.
It is never too late to take on life and challenge and crush your fears.
Contact me and let me know how your danger looks and how you’ve kicked it in the junk.