Your mind is the key. All you need to do is press the RESET button. I know, I can hear myself starting to sound like one of those fortune cookies…
But isn’t it amazing how the mind works and how easily we can train it and reset it to grow as we grow? Think back to when we were children, all the myths and fairy tales we believed and how different our outlook on things was and what it is now. Honestly, I cannot believe I was scared the time I swallowed a jackfruit seed, and my big sister convinced me that a tree would grow through my body and I would have leaves on my head instead of hair.
“People are not disturbed by events but by the view they hold about them.” ~Epictetus, stoic philosopher c. AD 75~
We often believe that what happens to us makes us feel how we feel and do what we do now but Placing blame on “events” that happen in our lives holds us back from our true selves and prevents us from flourishing into the amazing human beings we ought to be.
Events, situations, or people cannot make us feel or act in a certain manner. We are responsible for our own feelings, and reaction. The way we think, our attitude, habits, and beliefs we hold shape the way we feel and react in different situations.
EMOTIONAL RESPONSIBILITY = EMOTIONAL FREEDOM
Your feelings do not control you, so do not let anger, sadness, fear, shame, and anxiety dictate how you live your life. Remember, no one is responsible for your reaction to anything. Nobody “made” you do it….
For instance, if you get into an argument with a friend and they say something really mean. How are you going to react? It is your choice now; the ball is in your court.
a). You can choose to say something meaner back. b). You can punch them c). You can walk away d). You can do all the above.
You can decide to yell at the guy who was driving and splashed dirty water on you, or you turn a deaf ear and go clean yourself off. In fact, why not stone his car since it will probably make you feel better? But then what happens when he gets out of that car and beats you up? You can see how easily a small incident could escalate.
In Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, according to Avy Joseph, the principle of emotional responsibility is that “You are largely responsible for the way you feel and act.”
“The thought manifests as the word; the word manifests as the deed; the deed develops into habit; and habit hardens into character.”
Therefore, change your mindset because the way you think about something affects how you feel and how you behave. It is not the situation or what happens to us that provokes our feelings and behaviour. It is the way we think about a situation and the way we think about something, can then influence how we behave.