Fault Vs. Responsibility

by | Nov 23, 2020 | Life Lessons & Leadership | 0 comments

Fault vs Responsibility Shawn Trautman Lessons in Leadership

“It wasn’t my FAULT!!!’”

We had a long conversation, as a family, that started last night and made it’s way to the breakfast table this morning, and then to the couch.

Our talks was on the difference between fault and responsibility.

Let me first explain the picture.

Yesterday, my youngest went out to our car and opened the back to get her suitcase out. In doing so a bag of mason jars fell out and crashed into the ground, breaking into hundreds of little (and big) pieces.

We all heard the crash and didn’t think much of it….

Until an hour later.

A passerby notified us to the fact that there was broken glass all behind our car and into the street.

“What? Again?” I thought.

I assumed my daughter had taken care of the problem, but I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Turns out, she did absolutely nothing. She said “It wasn’t my FAULT!!!”

She was correct. I take the blame as I was the one who put that final bag in and I was fully prepared to remove it first before opening the back. I meant to tell the others but forgot. So be it.

But, this is where the discussion came in. Fault is past tense. Responsibility is future tense. Responsibility is our ability to respond.

Sometimes the two can go together, but they’re not necessarily linked.

In this case, it wasn’t her fault that the jars fell out when she opened the back, but it became her responsibility to take care of the mess.

If we’re out walking and come across a person laying on the ground injured, chances are it’s not our fault (I’m sure some of you are thinking of exceptions). Most people would take some sort of responsibility for helping (again, our response based on our ability).

Maybe we call for help. Maybe we just assess the situation and talk to the person to decide the next course of action. Maybe we provide some sort of first aid. Again, it’s our ability to respond. Not our fault, but we can respond with ability.

When someone steals something from us or hurts us in some way, it may not be our fault, but it’s darn sure our responsibility to handle how we react and what we do with it.

If we make a mistake and crash our car into a building, it’s most like a situation where we’re both at fault and we have to take responsibility. It happened and now here’s how we’re going to make it right.

After a long talk, my youngest got up and got a broom and finished cleaning up the mess that others had started cleaning for her.

The more we accept responsibility for situations we’re in on a daily basis, the greater our power becomes. If we choose to take no responsibility, the more we develop a victim mentality.

One is empowering and the other is limiting.

Sometimes things just happen to us or around us, but how we choose to respond defines the type of person we ultimately become.

The more responsibility you take for things around you, the more empowered you become.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2 + 15 =

What does it matter?

What does it matter?

#Reaction #Decision #Stress #Mindset #Check #Checkmate #Awareness #Options #Rebound #Lesson #Learn #Life #Health   by SHAWN TRAUTMAN@shawntrautman “What does it matter?” “What’s the point?” Twice this week I’ve had these questions hurled at me with solemn contempt as...

CHECK! What’s Your Move…

CHECK! What’s Your Move…

#Check #Checkmate #Stress #Mindset #Awareness #Options #Rebound #Lesson #Learn #Life #Health by SHAWN TRAUTMAN @shawntrautman What’s the right move? Sometimes we’re in situations where there’s not a good solution. A no-win scenario, of sorts. All options seem like bad...

Fighting Gravity is a Losing Game

Fighting Gravity is a Losing Game

#Gravity #Posture #Stress #Mindset #Problems #Progress #Attitude #BabySteps #Life #Health by SHAWN TRAUTMAN @shawntrautman Fighting gravity is a losing game. Naturally, we all fight it from the day we’re born. The longer we live, the greater the pull towards the...

What is a bad word and why?

What is a bad word and why?

“Different strokes for different folks” - I’m using this picture to illustrate differences of opinion on a single topic. The story that accompanies this was not between Joanna and I, it was a guest we had for Christmas. Please read and share your thoughts... Have you...

The Balancing of Life

The Balancing of Life

#Balance #Worry #Stress #Cortisol #Dopamine #Serotonin #Endorphins #Lesson #Learn #Life #Health by SHAWN TRAUTMAN @shawntrautman Ebb & flow, yin & yang, give & take, plus & minus, positive & negative, left & right, increase & decrease, see...

What do you learn from others?

What do you learn from others?

What do you learn from others? In other words, where do you get your stories? Stories that are worth telling others. Meaningful encounters are so much more than small talk. Talk. Ask questions. Real questions. Not “how’s it going?” with no real intent to find out. Go...

The Agony of da Feet!

The Agony of da Feet!

Do you have back pain? A lot of people do. Mine wasn’t as bad 3 weeks ago as it is today. I’ve done a LOT of walking (probably 4 to 5 miles a day) as I’m in the process of building my legs back up after a couple of weeks of being on the road and driving a lot. The...

You can’t win ’em all

You can’t win ’em all

Playing the hand you’re dealt doesn’t mean you’ll win. Sometimes you win. Sometimes you lose. Sometimes you have a really good hand and get beat by someone with a better hand. Sometimes you win with a hand you shouldn’t have. It all depends on how you play what you’re...

Pin It on Pinterest