Taking FULL Responsibility for Breakthrough Performance
Blog Post › Breakthrough Results
Breakthrough performance starts with taking a stand. Taking a stand means declaring what you are out to accomplish and not settling for anything less or different than that to which you have committed. The stand provides a reference point from which to base your decision-making and the actions. Asking, ‘are my actions consistent with my stand?’ is useful for maintaining integrity with respect to that stand. If the answer is ‘no’ then different actions are needed.
Being Cause in the Matter
Being cause in the matter of everything in your life is a powerful stand when you are committed to breakthrough performance. This is the ultimate expression of taking full responsibility for what happens in your life. Of course, you are not really the cause of everything in your life, but as a place to stand it allows you to deal with things on a level devoid of blame, fault, or victimhood. This stand doesn’t mean that you won’t fail nor does it prevent you from holding others responsible for their commitments. What it does do is provide a powerful opening for you to take action and be the author of the life that you are committed to living.
Breakthrough Performance Deals with Breakdowns
Invariably, a commitment to breakthrough performance means that breakdowns will occur. Things won’t go according to plan. You will bump up against what you didn’t know you didn’t know. Standing for being cause in the matter provides a way to deal with breakdowns. Recently, while working with a group on a project, I completed the part of the project for which I was responsible. I passed it on to my colleagues who would be doing the final editing and compiling of the whole body of work. I felt happy to have delivered my quality input on time and error free. Unfortunately, we got to the night before the deadline only to realize that the remaining work had not been completed. At first I related to that situation like it wasn’t my breakdown or issue, and I didn’t have any responsibility for it. However, upon taking a step back, I realized that standing in being cause in the matter, I was most certainly responsible for this breakdown. I didn’t follow up. I didn’t offer to assist in the final process. I didn’t take any action. In the end the work got done on time and met our quality standards. It was minor in the grand scheme of things. However, what it opened up for me was how I was not living into my stand not only in this instance, but in other situations as well.
Being Responsible Opens Up Possibilities
As soon as I realized that I was operating outside of my commitment to my stand, new ways of relating opened up for me. Here’s what I saw would be possible:
- Our clients would get the most value from our work because we would be fully prepared.
- Stress of dealing with the breakdown would be eliminated.
- We would be fully present to what’s happening in our work instead of in our heads with excuses, stories, and blame.
- The level of trust and relationship with my team would go up in knowing that each one of us owns the outcome – the whole outcome.
Any of those outcomes by themselves would be something to strive for, and all of them became possible and even predictable by my living within my stand. It’s in this way that taking a stand and being responsible for living within it with steadfast resolve makes breakthroughs possible.