The Modern Age of Accountability

On Saturday (8th April 2017), during my live radio interview for my book, Death Expands Us, I mentioned to the host, Carly, that for me, life is our biggest classroom, the place we will learn the most, and where I feel our greatest education will occur.

The classroom is where our biggest education occurs through self-discovery and exploration, figuring out our way as each lesson appears, exploring the options and opportunities available to us until we discover the one that fits us.

In a few of my blogs, I have written about honouring our word and doing as we say we will.

In this blog, I would like to explore this more. However, this time, we will delve into accountability and how that relates to us honouring our word and doing as we say we will.

Recently, in situations that have arisen around me, especially with projects I am working on, experiencing words such as “that’s just how it goes” when our agreement was no longer going to occur on the day and time we discussed.

It perplexed me. As a society, have we moved to this place where it is easy for us just to say these words (perhaps like my last blog, Is Talk Cheap?), yet perhaps we have lost our sense of accountability and our awareness of how this impacts the other people involved.
 For example, if I am working on a project with another person and at the beginning, we agree and confirm on what each of us will complete for the project within the agreed timeframe. If the other person decides down the line they are no longer able to complete their part of the project, it could mean I would need to take on the extra work myself or then begin finding someone else to complete the tasks, which could affect the project timeline.

Is it easier for us to just utter these words than say “I am sorry it didn’t go to plan as I thought it would. I understand and appreciate this affects you too. Let’s look at an alternative together” or just avoiding it all together and hoping “it will go away”.

Hearing the words “that’s just how it goes” spoken increasingly frequently, in my head I was wondering, as a society, have we decided that now those words mean we are free of any accountability? That by saying those words it is “okay” that we have not followed through / not honoured our word or commitment or not done as we said we would.

Where does that leave the other person?

As more people begin using these words, are we at risk of creating a space or culture where it will be seen or taken on as “acceptable” or “okay” now? How do we foster or learn accountability or honouring our word in that space?

And for someone to speak out in that space and say “No, that is not okay and it has a fallout on me” it isn’t easy to stand up and not just fall into what everyone else is doing / accepting. Sometimes, it can come with “you are being difficult” etc. as I have experienced in the past.

How can our world function as a collective if we lack personal accountability and responsibility?

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