Our society has become masterful at blaming others even when we know it is our responsibility. Denial is refusing to admit something. But “projection” is when we admit the reality of something, but denying responsibility for it. We simply blame someone else.
It’s nothing new. It started back in Genesis. God said don’t eat of this particular tree but when the Devil came on the scene lying saying that it was just God not wanting you to be like Him. So Eve crunched away. She told Adam that it was just ‘da bomb’ and he took a bite.
As you know, when God confronted them, Adam said, Yep, I did it. I have sinned, I am sorry; I take full responsibility for my choice. Please forgive me.
Okay, not exactly. He actually said, “That woman you put here with me.” In other words, it isn’t my fault, it’s hers.
Instead of being brutally honest, they pointed the finger and blamed someone else.
So how do we get people to take responsibility for their own actions? It starts young. I truly believe it starts by setting a good example. Kids are watching. Assign responsibility so they can learn how to manage it. The only way to master something is to let them make some decisions as they are ready for it. This helps to foster independence, a trait they will need for life. Don’t be afraid to talk through difficult situations. Finally, help them understand the big picture. Their actions affect a greater issue.
Kids gain from being responsible. They feel part of something greater. They feel a sense of accomplishment. They see that they can be trustworthy, reliable and contribute to the family, the classroom or group.
Each person has been given gifts entrusted to them. You teach responsibility, they’ll manage those gifts well.