Guest post by Dr. Gary North
Most people want to avoid personal responsibility.
The reason why the vast majority of your competitors will never achieve great success is that they do not want to take on additional responsibility. It is not just that they like to waste time, although they surely do. It is not simply that they like to waste money, although they surely do. It is, above all, that they want to avoid personal responsibility. They will do whatever is necessary to avoid being put in a situation in which they become responsible, meaning visibly responsible, for their actions. They will do whatever is necessary to avoid taking action.
If we go by the standard Pareto distribution, 80% of the public wants to avoid any increase in responsibility, while 20% is willing to increase personal responsibility. About 20% of this 20% achieve significant increases in personal responsibility, and 20% of this figure, under 1%, become significant leaders in their fields.
There is only one way to advance your career: take on additional responsibility. There is only one way to achieve success: take on additional responsibility. There is only one way to gain great wealth and keep it: take on additional responsibility.
The average person wants to increase his wealth the old-fashioned way: by winning the lottery. People throughout history have gambled. They expect the roll of the dice are the turn of a card to make them wealthy. They see this wealth strategy as the product of zero responsibility. They see it as an alternative to thrift, hard work, predictable behavior, and all of the other ethical foundations of starting and running a successful business. They do not want to do any of these things. What they want is Lady Luck to smile upon them and make them rich. These people are losers. They have adopted the worldview of losers. They have adopted the never-never land outlook on life: success without responsibility.
In every area of life, those people who take responsibility for their actions gain power and influence. Power and influence flow to those who will bear personal responsibility for the outcome of their actions. Because so few people are willing to do this, power and influence flow to come those who accept responsibility — a minority. This is an elite.
You must make a decision about how much personal responsibility you are willing to bear. When you start new projects, you will find that there is a lot more responsibility than you planned on. I think this is why most people prefer not to begin new projects.
On this website, I encourage you to start a business, start a website, start a book, start a political revolution. You do this by simple steps: steps that lead to greater personal responsibility.
People say they want to start a business, start a website, or even start a political revolution. “Something ought to be done!” They want to do it at zero cost. They want to do it without any increase in personal responsibility. So, they never actually start anything new. They have no influence. This is what they really want. If you get influence, you get responsibility. They do not want additional responsibility.
I encourage you to count the cost. I believe that the benefits far outweigh the costs. Success has a price, and the price is worth paying. But it must be paid for.
Procrastination kills. I think the #1 reason for procrastination is people’s realization that by taking action, they will wind up with greater responsibility.
the above article was first published here: https://www.garynorth.com/members/23194.cfm