Response-Ability: The Difference Between Mediocrity and Success


The word responsibility is a combination of two words: "Response" and "Ability". So, a responsible person is someone who is capable of responding correctly in any given circumstances. But don't let its simplicity fool you. Being responsible takes a lot of practice and knowledge and if you do it right, it will change your life. 

Success doesn't just happen, it's a series of choices that ultimately leads to having what we choose to define as success. In my previous article, I've written about how Tony Robbins have helped me shape my destiny through conscious decision making

A person who lives a mediocre life is not responsible (incapable of responding correctly) and blames others for his failures. On the other hand, successful people are responsible (capable of responding correctly) and takes ownership of their actions, regardless of their circumstances.


You can't control the external events and circumstances that happen to you. Events are at best, random;


You didn't decide to be born in your family. 

You had no say in determining your gender.

You have no control over the market.

Nor can you decide what others think of you. 


But one thing that you do have 100% control over is, your attitude. Your attitudes, decisions and responses to certain events will define your results and shape your destiny as you fit. 

success responsible goals

Read below to see how being responsible will empower you to take control over your life and be outrageously successful. 



The Event + Our Response = The Outcome

An event is something that happens to us. 

Whenever an event happens, it affects us - be it positive or negative. Events in our lives tend to dictate and be the masters of our emotions. It can be as simple as missing your taxi ride in the morning or seeing someone down the streets with an amazing smile. Both events will make us feel in a certain way. 

This becomes a problem when you realise that we actually have very little control over these events. Most events are at best, random and unexpected. If events are random and it dictated our feelings and lives, it would means that we are victims of chance.

However in the book "The Success Principles", Jack Canfield challenges and overhauls this helpless mentality with the formula, E + R = O.



Events in itself, doesn't mean Anything

Whether your car breaks down or get dismissed from your job due to company restructuring; you simply have no control over these events. Events that just happen to you are empty.

However many people make the mistake of letting these events dictate the way we feel and how we live our lives. The first step of becoming a responsible person is to understand that event are, in itself, always neutral. They bear no real meaning in and of itself. 



You Have a Choice

The difference between mediocrity and outrageous success is never based on events. We can never assume that a person is successful because he got lucky. Lucky people don't make successful people; people who commit themselves to success seems to get lucky in life. The real difference between a successful person and those who are not, is the level of response-ability in their lives. 

Once an event strikes us, we respond. And we always have a choice as to how we respond. Our lives are in fact, never dictated by these events alone because the events in itself are empty. For an event to have a meaning and create an outcome, it needs to have our response. This is where the equation Event + Response = Outcome comes in. 

A responsible person understands that Events do not determine OutcomesIt is always the combination of the event that happens to us and our response to that event that determines the outcome (E + R = O). This is exactly why responsible people are successful. They empower themselves and take control over their lives, not letting random events dictate their feelings or life. 

On the other hand, victimised people perceive the formula to be: Event = Outcome. They feel helpless whenever something wrong happens to them. These people are complainers who do not take ownership over their lives; letting random chains of events to dictate their lives. People who are not responsible will never be able to live their life as they want. 



It is time to stop looking outside yourself for the answers to why you haven’t created the life you lead and the results you produce. You — no one else! To achieve major success in life — to achieve those things that are most important to you — you must assume 100% responsibility for your life. Nothing less will do.
— The Success Principles, by Jack Canfield


Events that happen in your life and the problems it throws at you is nothing when compared to your ability to solve them. Don't overestimate your problems and underestimate yourself. You are not a mere product of your circumstances but a product of your own decisions. So be responsible, take ownership and take full control over your life. 


Now you're in charge.