Taking responsibility for something is not the same thing as blaming ourself for it.

Taking responsibility says, “I see my part in this, and I know how to create a more desirable result next time.”

This is empowerment.

Self blame says, “I screwed up and I’m going to punish myself for it.”

This is disempowering.

It leads to guilt, hiding, and bottled up emotions that make us feel stuck.

Self blame is actually just a defense mechanism to avoid facing the truth about our role in something, because our subconscious thinks it’s going to be too painful.

But this is a lie that keeps us trapped in a cycle of shame.

The truth is that facing it might hurt for a second, but it’s actually a huge relief to give up the burden we’ve been carrying.

Acknowledging our part in what happened is exactly what’s needed to create a better outcome.

Sometimes our part may simply be that we put up with a terrible situation for way too long, because we didn’t know how to leave, or that we deserved better.

Taking responsibility doesn’t always mean that we forgive someone or welcome them back into our lives.

It does mean taking back the power to create our own life by making different choices.

When we have “messed up,” we know exactly how to improve – if we can understand what we did, without defaulting to self blame.

Self responsibility is a powerful form of self love.