While serving in the military, I worked in a department that had sensitive deadlines and strict guidelines. There wasn’t much room for error, and the dates weren’t suggestions. Things had to be done correctly and on time. There simply was no avoiding it; I had to suck it up and put my foot to the pavement.
Problem was that I worked with another individual that didn’t seem to care. Although instructions were clear for some reason, it didn’t bother him. Now usually this type of attitude doesn’t bother me but his negligence started to affect me.
My boss would ask me about missing work, and it began to be a problem. This went on for several months and I continued to work through it.
As the year went on we were given a big project with specific details that had to be followed to the t. As I continued meeting the requirements by myself, his laziness persisted.
I was doing all the work with little to no support. With the deadline fast approaching I felt the only way to solve this problem was to address him face to face.
When I finally brought up my concerns he was not happy with what I had to say. I recieved push back and the conversation slowly escalated until I was screaming at the top of my lungs.
I let my emotions get the best of me and it clearly showed. Everyone in the immediate area heard the altercation and were asking questions. It all came to head when I talked to our commander and eventually got demoted.
Even though I felt justified and everyone knew my situation, it just didn’t matter. Yelling is never the right way to solve a problem and I payed dearly.
For weeks I despised him and blamed him for my situation. I can say that a certain point I even hated him, but this did nothing but make me mad and frustrated.
Then one day I realized that my wound was self-inflicted, it was something I needed to address with myself. My actions caused this, and ultimately I would have to deal with the consequences.
I recognized this and finally felt at peace again. There was no one I could blame but myself. I took complete ownership of the circumstances and decided to move on.
This was an important lesson that I learned. Instead of blaming others you must first look at yourself. Ask yourself how did I get here? Answering this simple question will give you the solution.
By taking ownership of your decisions you take control of your life. It’s easy to point fingers and blame the economy, parents, co-workers and everyone else; but not until you realize your own faults will you be able to find a resolution.
I challenge you to reflect on a bad situation that happened to you; what could you have done to change or alter the circumstances? The sooner you can answer these questions, the better off you’ll be.
Ultimately, we are a product of our choices. We can’t control everything but we can control how we react. Stop being a victim and take ownership of your life today. What can you work on today to make yourself better tomorrow?