Taking responsibility for the break-up is something we hear a lot about. But what exactly does it mean to “take responsibility”? Why does it matter?
The word responsibility means “response-ability” or the ability to decide and choose how YOU respond. In some cases it also means self-accountability which means holding yourself responsible for the good and bad in any situation you are involved in.
As you can see, neither word means taking responsibility for things you are not responsible for, or holding yourself accountable for someone else’s actions.
Taking responsibility for things you are not responsible for doesn’t make you a loving or evolved human being. Taking responsibility for things you are not responsible for makes you a control freak or busy-body.
When trying to get your ex back, it makes you a desperate, passive aggressive, needy, manipulative ex with low self-esteem and no sense of self-value. A very attractive target for exploitation, manipulation, ill-treatment and abuse.
So, what is it that you are really responsible for?
You are responsible for falling short of your responsibilities. You are responsible for not doing enough to make the relationship work. You are responsible for making sure that YOU do better this time round.
This is not about assigning blame or beating yourself silly with regret and guilt. While blame is mostly backward-looking, self-responsibility focuses on learning from your past choices and behaviours so that you do not repeat your mistakes. But more importantly, learning from your past choices and behaviours so that you CAN create different/better experiences.
Only when you are truly self-accountable does true healing and growth begin. Healing and growth are pre-requisites for getting your ex back.
But it is the ability to respond appropriately, effectively and constructively that makes the process of getting your ex back less painful — and a lot faster.
When you are truly self-accountable and self-responsible, you own your actions before you even take action. This enables you to ask yourself the right questions: Is what I’m planning on doing going to help or hurt my chances? What can I do differently that will help me move things further along? How will I constructively handle things if they don’t turn out as expected? etc.
By placing responsibility solely on your own shoulders, you empower yourself to act. Instead of sitting around waiting for your ex to act so you can react out of fear, desperation, frustration, anger or neediness, you calmly plan your next action, mindful of your choices, decisions and behaviours.
Deliberate action instead of emotion-based actions guide your every move. Even when you are blind-sided by unforeseen circumstances, you take it upon yourself to tailor your response to the current situation.
Unlike reactors who crawl back inside their “safe” hiding place when things don’t go as planned/expected, or flap around in panic mode, you intentionally choose to accept the unexpected and unwanted as learning moments, and carefully construct words and actions that take you beyond the event.
Self-honesty, self-awareness and deliberate and intentional actions will get you faster anywhere any time (and guarantee you a better chance at success), than just reacting from emotion, or wishing and hoping.