Personal Responsibility and What That Means to Me Essay Sample

  • Pages: 5
  • Word count: 1,111
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  • Category: poverty

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Introduction of TOPIC

We have to begin with ourselves and take responsibility for our thoughts, choices, actions and reactions. Then we can be responsible for the circumstances we create in our world. When you believe something or someone else is responsible for your problems and the resulting solutions, that exact thought is the first problem to solve when it comes to taking personal responsibility.

Even though the main arguments against personal responsibility include that many people are just naturally unable to take responsibility because they are either financially or physically unable, many people would agree with the philosophy that personal responsibility is the idea that human beings choose, instigate, or otherwise cause their own actions. The same can be said when attending college and applying that philosophy toward a student’s own education because “In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.”

Eleanor Roosevelt.

For a person to achieve their goals they have to understand how to manage their time properly and use that time to work toward the accomplishment of those goals. The lack of proper management of time can increase your stress which can lesson the overall learning process when it comes to academia. We have to learn to take responsibility for our own actions in order to understand what impact that has on our lives. What you choose to do in life and how you manage your time to accomplish your goals will define who you are in life.

It determines everything including how you will live your life, what you will accomplish in life, how easily it will be to support your future family and essentially how hard you make everything on yourself as a whole. You have the tools to make it happen. The various forms of this idea derive from the fourth stanza of the critically panned poem “Invictus” by W.H. Henley. “I am the master of my fate/ I am the captain of my soul”, which itself is borrowed from the Latin poet Sallust: “The soul is the captain and ruler of the lives of mortals.”

Many people are of the opinion that they should be handed everything that they need without having to work for it themselves. That everything should be fair across the board so that they can have it easier on themselves. They

refuse to realize that they need to take personal responsibility of their own actions and ultimately

their own direction or path in life.

In an article in Marketplace Money two Poverty Experts from both sides of the political spectrum argued about why poor people remain poor and what they can do about it. On one side Charles Murray argued that “In a good job market, to be poor — if you are physically able — is a choice. Right now the government subsidizes bad decisions; it masks the consequences of doing things at a young age that will blight the rest of your life.” Murray argues that society should do a better job of telling kids from disadvantaged backgrounds that certain decisions have to be made in order to obtain a better life. Adversely, Melissa Boteach sees the problem differently. She claims that “that progressives and conservatives agree that personal responsibility — mixed with public and private initiatives to lift people up — is a key strategy in fighting poverty.” She believes that opportunities need to be created for people to succeed.

Accepting personal responsibility empowers people with recognizing their own opportunities in life. It enables people the freedom and power to guide the course of their own lives. Once people come to that realization and take responsibility for their failures, they will feel liberated in a sense and will gain the power to completely take control of change in themselves. People who have the freedom to choose their path in life realize that they are the only ones responsible for their current and future situations, their successes and failures and ultimately their own overall happiness in general. Failing to accept personal responsibility can result in negative consequences.

When you have not accepted personal responsibility, you can run the risk of becoming overly dependent on others for recognition, approval, affirmation and acceptance. You can become chronically hostile, angry or depressed over how unfairly you have been or are being treated. You may develop a fear about ever taking a risk or making a decision which can lead to being overwhelmed by disabling fears. A person who fails to take personal responsibility in life becomes unsuccessful at the enterprises they take on in life as well as developing successful personal relationships.

All of this is both emotionally and physically unhealthy which in turn can lead to an addiction to unhealthy substances, such as the abuse of alcohol, drugs, food or unhealthy behavior such as excessive gambling, shopping, sex, smoking and / or an addiction work itself. Antwan Houston stated that “Personal responsibility requires one to finally accept the truth that you are responsible for your own actions. Most of the time when mistakes are made, the initial reaction is to point a finger or find an excuse rather than accept involvement. Personal responsibility is the key to College success because at times, most students find themselves falling short of what lies in between these two.”

Personal Responsibility is taking responsibility for your actions, accepting the consequences that come from those actions and understanding that what you do impacts those around you. Personal responsibility involves working on our own character and skill development rather than blaming others for situations and circumstances. It means choosing to develop your life in a way that honors your values and purpose. In short, if we believe the thought that personal responsibility begins inside ourselves and moves outward into all that we do, it will show as a direct reflection of ourselves and our beliefs. We are the masters of our own destiny. We are the makers of our own fate. When we fully realize this truth, we will no longer search for the truth outside of ourselves.


(2011, 12). Personal Responsibility and College Success. Retrieved 12, 2011, from The Poem “Invictus” by W. E. Henley.

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