Freedom, Responsibility and Bravery

This is something I posted a while back, but I just got a comment from someone saying it was the best blog post they ever read!  So I thought I’d post it here.  It is pretty good if I say so myself!  : )

I think some people have gotten confused about freedom, about independence. Some people seem to think that freedom means a lack of responsibility. True freedom means total responsibility. You are completely responsible for you. That is freedom.
You can decide if you want to go to work or if you want to starve. You can decide to hold out for the dream job or take whatever someone will pay you to do.

You can decide to have 10 children or you can decide to have no children. 

You can decide to spend more money than you earn or you can decide to live within your means.

You can decide to go to church or you can decide to stay home.

You can decide to diet or decide not to. You are completely in control of what you eat or drink or smoke or inject. 

You can decide to get married, decide to stay married, decide to cheat on your spouse, decide to divorce, decide to stay single.

This list could go on forever, but I think you see my point. Stop acting like all these things just happen to you – that you didn’t make decisions that led to where you are today. Now don’t get me wrong, I know some people have lost their jobs due to no fault of their own, the economy is terrible. But if you are free (and you are), you get to decide what to do with that.

Will you get training for a different job? Will you accept less money or prestige? Will you dramatically scale back your lifestyle? Will you apply for government aid and just give up? You get to choose, you are free.

But realize that the minute you start handing responsibility for your life over to someone else, you lose some of your freedom. You don’t get to decide what your kids will be served at school if someone else is paying for it and preparing it. You want to decide? Pack their lunch. Take responsibility.

I live in a townhome community. I can’t paint my house purple, we have rules everyone must follow. I have given up some of my freedom in exchange for not doing yard work. I’m not saying never give up any of your freedom, I’m saying know when you’re giving it up and what you’re trading it for. Stop demanding freedom when you won’t take the accompanying responsibility.

American is the land of the free and the home of the brave – because true freedom requires bravery. The bravery required for you to stand up and admit that you and you alone are responsible for your life. Are you brave?

Comments

8 Responses to “Freedom, Responsibility and Bravery”
  1. Tina Sweet says:

    Denise,
    I was at the CLinical Lab Day at Wake Tech the other week. I have to admit you are one of the best speakers I have ever heard in my 22 years in the Lab field. I really enjoyed the whole presentation.
    Tina Sweet
    Franklin County Health Dept

  2. deniseryan says:

    Thanks, Tina! You all were so much fun!!!! And thanks for all the hard work you do. I know we don’t appreciate lab people nearly enough. Have a wonderful fall!!!

  3. yadira creech says:

    Dear Denise,
    I was at the DPI fall conference in Raleigh NC and I enjoyed your session so much!!! I’m a truly fun and when I grow up I want to be like you! LOL!!!

  4. deniseryan says:

    Yadira – thanks so much! That was such a fun conference! And you can totally be like me! Let know if I can ever be of help. And thanks for taking the time to post a comment!

  5. Donald Swain says:

    Right on the money Denise….you were talking about parenting right? Awesome post and I agree the best I’ve read in awhile. I’ve shared it with my Managers and my Boss. Freedom isn’t free and we owe it to ourselves to take responsibility for it!

  6. deniseryan says:

    So glad you liked it – every time I reread it I fire myself up. Ha!

  7. Stan Meyer Jr says:

    Denise,….long time no ‘spark’. 😉 I was looking at some of my old files and found your link. As I haven’t visited in several years, I clicked on it, thinking I’d see what has changed. The first view was this ‘blog’ comment! Very succinct comments that, unfortunately, are not read by enough people. So many have given up their freedoms without realization that we are now at nearly a 50/50 balance of people that depend on others to make decisions for them. Thanks for the spark and keep it up!
    Stan

  8. deniseryan says:

    Stan! Great to hear from you!!! Thanks so much for the terrific comment. I sure hope you’re doing great! Hope 2013 is your best year yet! Best wishes, Denise

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