I could probably write an entire book on the subject of owning the outcome and getting out what you put into something but I want to keep it short today. I used to be a blamer but have learned a lot by reflecting on successes and failures and learning everything I could from good leaders. Learning to take ownership for your situation is a lifelong journey that some never complete. We can’t control everything that happens to us but we can control how we react to situations and usually the results we see today are the effects of behavior or decisions from our past that led us here. Once we realize and accept that, we can start to change the future by making better decisions today.
If you’re a leader, blaming others for failures is never the right decision because the root cause most likely began with you. Did someone screw up? Sure they did, but how long have you been tolerating behavior from that person instead of having hard conversations to get better results or getting that person off the team? If you choose to keep them on the team knowing they don’t perform, or you haven’t given them the tools or training they need to be successful, the problem is yours to own. You won’t get better results until you own most of what’s challenging you and preventing you from achieving goals. It’s way easier to blame others which is why it’s the most common excuse for not reaching goals, but it doesn’t help and actually causes others to question your leadership.
Personal goals are no different. You didn’t have time to go to the gym last week because work was so busy and everyone needed something from you? The kids needed driven to a friends house? Who didn’t have the confidence to say no and manage priorities? You. Accept that your behavior causes you to miss goals and own it. Either set different goals or change behavior to achieve them. Trust me, you’ll feel better taking ownership of outcomes and will begin to get better outcomes, a little at a time.