Now, this is the story all about how my life got flip turned upside down. And I’d like to take a minute, just sit right there. I’ll tell you how Will Smith’s Instagram story changed my life. He recently posted on Instagram about a debate he had with a friend on the difference between fault and responsibility. His main argument is this, “It really don’t matter whose fault it is that something is broken if it’s your responsibility to fix it.”
Everything that happens to you isn’t a direct consequence of something that you said or did. Sometimes you just encounter bad people who wreak havoc on your previously normal life. Or even worse, someone that you believed to be good can turn on you. And while it’s unfair to categorize people as either “good” or “bad,” sometimes it’s the best way to cope with how they ultimately impacted you. But the fact of the matter is that no matter what traumas you face or hardships that you go through, what you choose to take away from them is entirely up to you.
Will Smith speaks towards how people fall into “victim mode” when an unfortunate event occurs in their lives. We tend to put the fault on others rather than owning up to our role in the incident or dealing with our feelings. But what we don’t realize is that by not only acknowledging our problems but also choosing to view them in a positive light, we can end up helping others as well as ourselves.
This doesn’t go to say that we all have to hold TED talks about our issues, but by simply talking to our friends, family, and other support systems we can find that we’re not alone in our situations. And by seeing those experiences as something that will change us for the better, we can show others going through something similar that they too can be okay.
Taking responsibility for the things that happen to us is a lot easier said than done. People suck and it’s much simpler to dump it all on them rather than accepting their problems as our own. I think we all hold the same bad habit of blaming ourselves unnecessarily.
When someone mistreats us, we immediately see it as a result of something that we must’ve done to provoke them. But at the end of the day, no matter the act, we don’t know what’s going on in other’s lives. He makes it a point to say that we are not letting those who wronged us off the hook. I think this is important to note because we are not alone in our responsibility taking the journey. They did something wrong and will ultimately face the consequences of that. But it is not our job to let their decisions ruin our lives.
We hold the power to control how we let things affect us.
Being the bigger person is far more rewarding than holding a grudge. How we define happiness is different for everyone. But I believe it’s pretty unanimous that happiness involves self-respect. And the first step in respecting yourself is knowing that it’s up to you to make the best of whatever life hands you. Will Smith ends his monologue by saying, “Taking responsibility is taking your power back.” Our power is found in being our best selves.