3 Elements of Self Improvement: Acknowledgement, Analysis, Accountability
An automatic reaction takes place in most people when things go wrong, or when we are corrected for our actions. The correction can come from a human source such as a boss, but it can also come from a Divine Source in situations that we find ourselves in. The initial response is usually to make an excuse, or deflect blame to another source, anything to keep from accepting the responsibility.
Why do we do this? Because if we are responsible, then we will have to change something. And if you think everything you do is just fine, then what’s to change?
Dustin Morgan was faced with this reality when he found himself staring at the cold, cinder block walls of a jail cell. In From Woodstock To Eternity, he is forced to Acknowledge the failure, Analyze what led up to it, and take Accountability for his actions.
Most of the time, when people get caught doing something wrong, they’re not sorry for what they did, but for the fact that they got caught. They analyze the execution of their plan to see where they messed up, but they never admit that there was anything wrong with the plan in the first place.
“If I had only done this, or not done that, then it would have worked.”
In this case, it wasn’t the execution – it was the plan! The vial of coke was there, because that’s how he had planned to live.
As he stares at the blank, pale yellow walls of his prison cubicle, he knows that as long as he continues living this way, the vulnerability will be there – like stripes on a tiger. No amount of precautions or self-imposed checks and balances will guarantee it won’t happen again. There will always be a forgotten roach in the ashtray, an open container in the car, a misplaced film tin in the trunk, an empty vial in the suitcase. And they will always lead back to this place. It’s worse than that. The next time he gets caught, it’ll lead to the state penitentiary.
1. Acknowledgement – It’s Not Working: You have to admit something is wrong before
you will ever try to fix it. This is the hardest part, because if we do admit that something is wrong in our life, then that means we have to fix it. That means change.
2. Analyze the Root Cause: Decisions have consequences, but our decisions come out of our lifestyles. Our lifestyle is where we
have put the treasure of our heart – friends, activities, style, fads, language, etc. If your lifestyle is undisciplined, your decisions will tend toward avoiding self discipline. If you are hard working and organized, your decisions will tend toward taking on the task.
3. Accountability – Accepting the Blame and Creating Solutions: This is the final key to self improvement. Take responsibility and come up with a new plan that will avoid the mistakes of the past and pave the way for a better future. Dustin Morgan vowed to raise his family up in the Lord, and he did. This one commitment changed his life and that of those around him for the better.