When my son Mick was 10 years old, he was leading his hockey team in assists. His coach told my wife and I that Mick needs take more of a leadership role on the team and to talk more to the other players on the ice.

When I told Mick what his coach told us, he said “he didn’t want to”.  I could tell he was uncomfortable being asked to be responsible for more than just his position on the ice.

I then wondered, how I would communicate to a 10 year old, the concept of and the need to take full responsibility for something.

Then I thought of the word “Responsibility”. It actually comes from two words; “Response” and “Ability”. Therefore, if we apply the definitions of these two words, we can possibly understand and communicate the concept better.

If you have the ability to do something and you don’t respond to a situation in a manner to which you are able, you are acting irresponsible. If you do respond to a situation based on your abilities, you are being responsible.

So, if Mick has the ability to set plays up and knows where his fellow teammates should be, and then doesn’t help them and ensure they know where to go and what to do, then theoretically, the outcome of the game is very much Mick’s responsibility.

Sounds harsh but that is the way life goes.

So we have two options. Either lower our awareness and ability so that we don’t actually see what we truly see or we can take full responsibility for what we know and respond in the manner in which we are able.

TAKEAWAY: Take a look at your own life and see if there are some areas or situations that you actually could respond to in a better way. If you do, things will go better and you will be more in control of your life.