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Response-Ability

by Robert McKinney

What is responsibility?  Our parents and teachers made every effort to make us responsible for ourselves.  We learned to accept responsibility at we evolved into adults.  We pay our bills, abide by the law, and understand that we are held responsible if we do not.

What if, however, we have been looking at it from only one side of the coin.  Responsibility is also the ability to respond, or response-ability.

Choosing to be responsible also means you need to be response-able.  Are you prepared to make the tough decision?  Do you have the training, certifications, or credentials needed to make it?  Do you have the proper equipment?  Is your mindset prepared for what is to come?  Are you aware of the consequences of your actions?  If you can answer these and more questions to your own satisfaction, you are response-able.

If you are response-able, when the time comes to take action you will feel responsible.  You have weighed the information at hand, taking into account the elements of the incident.  Your decisions will be made with understanding.

Being responsible, however, may not be enough to be response-able.  Anyone can promote in a field, but a promotion does not instantly grant the wisdom to understand the whole of their environment.  A responsible person may rely on their authority alone, which may provide little defense if questioned on an action.

If you can, take the time to evaluate if you are response-able in whatever field you choose.  By doing so, you are applying Focus, Wisdom, and Knowledge to a situation where none may be present.  You evolve the situation with your insight, allowing you a better understanding of it.  Your insight may be enough to change an outcome, prevent a tragedy, or save a life.

May the Force be with you.