It’s not easy to talk about, but it’s important. Personal responsibility is something that we are so quick to throw away in this day and age. It seems like the world is conspiring against us, or at least trying its best to make things difficult for us.
But what if I told you that personal responsibility was one of the most powerful tools you have?
What if I told you that the decisions we make are so important in the big picture of becoming content and having a fulfilled life as a cancer survivor?
Personal responsibility is something that many people have lost sight of these days. We seem to be living under this idea that our lives should “just happen” or go completely unchallenged like it’s not really worth making an effort. Even instant gratification that we all receive has created this element of winner-take and forget everyone else!
The truth is, personal responsibility has everything to do with how fulfilling your life will be because, without it, there isn’t any real opportunity for change!
It’s hard enough dealing with all of the changes in our lifestyles alone. Why would someone want to add more unnecessarily difficult things into their day by shirking on personal responsibilities just because they can?
This is especially hard for Cancer survivors because of the overall experience does to the individual psyche.
People tend to feel an elevated sense of entitlement because they’ve been through something so extreme and life-altering. But when does it become too much?
When is the person who’s supposed to be receiving help instead provides more stress as a result of their unwillingness or inability to do what needs to be done for themselves?
Or Is this path a more harmful way to go?
Personal responsibility is a difficult thing to master. Especially when we feel like we’re not in control of our own lives. But it’s important for everyone who suffers from cancer and has survived the experience to recognize their importance in being able to live happily with their peace after such an ordeal.
They need to know that they are capable. Capable of taking care of themselves as well as being aware of the feeling of entitlement.
It’s a dangerous path! One that will lead to more anger and resentment. These feelings are toxic! But they’re also common among those who feel like the world owes them something after everything they’ve been through.
What the survivor needs is an understanding of what it means to show up for themselves as well as the people around them. Believe me, I have my moments. But I always go back to the idea that my responsibility is about me as well as those around me.
And that where I’m stuck right now!
If we don’t take care of ourselves, we can’t take care of anyone else.
It’s not always easy to look in the mirror and be honest with ourselves about where we’re at, either physically or mentally. It takes courage to face what’s happening inside our own minds as well as out there in the world. But it is so important that you do this for yourself.
Every self-help guru that you see and listen to says this! It’s about time we recognize personal responsibility as the cornerstone to self-care.
I know that I’m not in control of everything, but there is a lot that I am responsible for. And so if we’re going to be there for others, we must acknowledge this can be really hard when you are struggling internally. Afraid of the outcomes that I know I have to face!
What I’m trying to say is you can’t do what you need for yourself if your mental health isn’t in a good place. You’re not going to be able to start the hard conversation with someone else. Or even know where to begin this conversation if it’s been so long since you’ve had one with yourself.
After treatment, your mind races thinking about all the things you want to accomplish. The proverbial Bucket-List to accomplish. And I know that’s a good thing. It becomes stressful because you just don’t have enough time to do everything while also doing everything needed to take care of ourselves and our mental health.
My relationship with time is no longer my vulnerability!
So what is my personal responsibility? Taking care of myself and having the awareness about how all this affects those around me without making decisions. Reminding myself that I’m not entitled to anything!
I didn’t realize how much “stress” was related to my life as a cancer survivor until I took the time to do this work. It’s no surprise that it can be hard for those around us as well. This is why we need to have empathy for them also. I’m not perfect, but I understand what is important in my life!
When I was diagnosed with cancer, it felt like my life as I knew it had been erased. Suddenly everything that mattered to me before seemed irrelevant and unimportant in the face of this new reality. The diagnosis made me feel very lonely. Isolated from friends and family who seemed too scared or uncomfortable to talk about what was happening.
It’s easy for people living through treatment (or any difficult experience) to slip into a sense of entitlement because they have gone through something so traumatic; but when you take care of yourself, you are taking care of your loved ones around you too.
You need them just as much as they need you right now. Understanding that personal responsibility includes being vulnerable and patient. There is no easy way to get through this, but you owe it to yourself and your loved ones to give as much of yourself as possible. -Todd