A subtle denial of ownership is innocence and indifference. The future is denied with the response, “It doesn’t matter to me—whatever you want to do is fine.” This is always a lie and just a polite way of avoiding a difficult conversation around ownership. People best create that which they own, and co-creation is the bedrock of accountability. The ownership conversation most directly deals with the belief that each of us, perhaps even from the moment of birth, is cause, not effect. The leadership task is to find a way to use this conversation to confront people with their freedom.
It is vulnerable to accept responsibility when we cannot always control all the variables for success. We often avoid the vulnerability of taking responsibility with polite dismissals. What is one thing that you have taken responsibility for in this season of your life that leaves you vulnerable? Is it a work relationship, a neighbor relationship, perhaps the precarious relationship that a loved one or child is in with their work or friendships. Notice this, and claim this decision to engage without guaranteed outcomes.
Does anyone else know that you’ve made that decision? Find a way to share with someone today the isolation you might feel in being unable to control the outcome, and yet choosing to be a cause and not simply an effect.
Block, Peter. Community: The Structure of Belonging (intro, and pp. 127). Berrett-Koehler Publishers. Kindle Edition