It has been said that our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but that we are responsible for who we become.
All around me I hear excuses from people. Excuses about why they cannot do something, or why the have failed at something. Hell I even had a chap, who for the purposes of this missive shall remain nameless, who said that I “have to” mentor him because he was previously disadvantaged! What absolute crap is that?
Many years ago, my father said to me “You have no control over the name that you bring into this world because it is the name that I have given you, but the name that you take out of this world is the name that you have made for yourself.”
It is something that I have taken very seriously all my life. I am careful about the promises that I make because I have to keep them. I am careful about the commitments that I make because they have to be honoured. It is my name that is at stake and quite honestly it is the only possession that I have that I will take to the grave with me.
The result of this for me, is that I have never blamed my background or my circumstances for anything – there’s no real point is there? I am the only one who can make the changes and I am the only one that can make things happen (or not happen) in my life.
So why is it, that where ever I go, I hear tales of woe and stories about how the government is to blame, or apartheid, or the interest rates, or global warming or the tax man or anything else that they can think of and blame. Why is it that we as individuals cannot take responsibility for what we’ve done and learn from our mistakes, dust ourselves off and stand up and start again. There’s no shame in that at all.
For me the shame comes in the fact that we don’t take responsibility and own our own mistakes, but that we find it easier to just blame all those around us!
So which one are you? Do you stand tall and proud? Do you take responsibility for what you do or do you find it easier to blame everyone and everything else?
What kind of name will you take out of this world? What legacy will you leave your children? What name have you given them?