Stand Up and Be Counted

We touched a little on the subject of accountability yesterday. Today, let’s take a different angle on accountability and talk about why some people think it means fixing the blame for what goes wrong.

In any discussion about accountability, you can see some people begin to feel defensive, just by watching their body language. Maybe they are struggling with a life-threatening illness, or maybe had been in a severe automobile accident and are feeling like victims. Often you will hear them say things like, “Are you trying to tell me that I am to blame for this? Do you want me to believe that this is my fault?” That’s not the kind of accountability we’re talking about; it has nothing to do with blaming or faulting.

You see, the word “accountability” is an ancient Roman term that at its Latin root means “to stand forth and be counted.” What we are talking about is standing up for more in your life, and making it count. And if you realize that you might have had a hand in creating something – yes, even an accident or illness – without blaming yourself, you will also realize that you have the power to do something about it – to change it – even if it is only changing the way you look at the situation.

Everything you see in your life is something you had some part in creating, even if it was just to stand by and do nothing and let it happen. When you decide to take accountability, you make this creation a conscious process. Winston Churchill once said that, “The price of greatness is responsibility.” So, take that responsibility for your life. And when you do, you will find a power, happiness and a sense of internal peace you may not have thought possible.