Fault vs Responsibility – The Ultimate Fallacy That Changed My Perspective on Life

Fahad Cheema - June 1, 2020 - 0 comments

Everything that happens in your life might not be your fault but it is your responsibility

What does this statement mean? Well, let me break it down for you with a personal story.

A couple of years ago this amazing book dropped out called “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”. It instantly started gaining popularity maybe because of its catchy title and every other person I encountered started mentioning its name so I started feeling left out.

After a while, the FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) started getting so strong that I had to see what this book was all about. I grabbed a copy from the book store and decided to give it a read. After only going through the first 2 chapters I stopped reading and my naive self told me that you have gotten the gist of it. It is a book telling you how to not give a fuck about anything and the reason it gained popularity is because of its bold language and the constant use of the word “F*ck”.

Years passed by and that book was just lying in my house now having sparkles of dust all over it. I had not opened the book for a long time until a month ago when the quarantine forced me to open the book again but this time I actually finished reading the whole book.

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

Unlike the last time, upon reading the book properly I realized as the title might suggest, no its not a book about not giving a fuck about anything. It about how we as a society give too many fucks about the wrong things and not enough fucks about the right things.

Although there are many important lessons in this book but the one that hit me the most was the “Responsibility/Fault Fallacy”.

Here’s an excerpt from the book to explain it.

Responsibility and fault often appear together in our culture. But they are not the same thing. If I hit you with my car, I am both at fault and likely legally responsible to compensate you in some way. Even if hitting you with my car was an accident, I would still be responsible. This is the way fault works in our society. If you fuck up, you’re on the hook for making it right. And it should be that way.

But there are also problems we aren’t at fault for, yet we are still responsible for them.

This is a very strong statement and while some of you might not fully agree with it initially (neither did I), it doesn’t change the fact that it’s absolutely true. 

We all have someone or something to blame for how shitty our life is and It’s ok to blame these things for a while. But YOU are responsible for how you feel about those things. You are responsible for your emotions. Even in extreme cases of sorrow and tragedy. It is up to you to find a way to cope. And find a way to be happy again. I know that sounds cold but that’s the reality.

This one statement has completely changed the way I used to see life and ever since I have read it in that book, there’s not been a single day where I haven’t taken responsibility for everything that happens in my life.

Here’s one example

I always wanted to start my own personal brand but being a master’s student I always kept blaming my hectic university schedule and the loads of assignments I had to complete every day to convince myself that it’s not my fault. Today, nothing has changed except for the fact that I have started accepting responsibility for MYSELF meaning that I’m in control.

Now I have my own personal brand creating digital content that has more than 10K subscribers in the very first month of launch.

Once you start looking at your problems through this lens you are empowered and do something about it.

I would also like to add that responsibility doesn’t mean blame or fault. It’s not a value judgment; it’s a fact of life. You are in your life right now. You can take responsibility and do the best you can in the now to create a better future, or you can wallow in the past or fear the future.

Which person do you want to be? Food for thought 😉

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