Personal Responsibility/Self Discipline…America Misses You

In the last two days, I have had two things happen that have helped me to see the importance of personal responsibility.

Yesterday, I met with a mortgage lender to understand what amount I could get for a loan.  I was quite surprised by the fact that I was approved for a loan that was much more than we could afford.  It made me realize that I could get into a lot of trouble if I wasn’t careful.

Today, I was reading an article about obesity and according to the World Health Organization, by 2015 2.3 billion adults will be overweight and 700 million will be obese.

While these two thoughts are completely different, they both deal with personal responsibility.  Currently, Congress seems to be on a path to pass laws that protect us from ourselves, such as the proposed laws to ban soda from school cafeterias or trans. fat from food.  Regardless of how many laws Congress makes up, they’ll never be able to protect people from themselves. Period.

Self discipline has deteriorated so much that the personal responsibility has been replaced with a sense of entitlement.  People feel they are entitled to welfare checks, free health care coverage, a good paying job, and a college education.

Politicians bank on this entitlement to get into office by promising the world to voters.  The message resonates with people because they feel they deserve all of the items being promised.  Congress is spending billions of dollars to help people w/o addressing the root cause.  The days of “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country” are long gone.

It is easy to sit here and complain about this, but this strong conservative blog always tries to have solutions to go along with the issues.  For the time being, I think there are some things we can do, such as tackle welfare reform. In New York City, they were able to cut welfare recipients down by 50% during the late 90’s with work requirements, imposition of sanctions, and mandatory workfare jobs. I will get into this more in future posts, but essentially, the government took a firm stance that you at least need to try to get a job to get a free check.

For the future, I think our educational system needs to focus on teaching innovation and leadership, along with the basics.  With a more volatile job market, people need to learn how to promote and motivate themselves.

Lastly, I believe that everyone has a circle of influence and that we can encourage those around us to be self-sufficient.  I believe that parents can teach the valuable lesson that you have to work hard to make it and that life is not always fair.  I really do believe that teachers and school boards can implement education policy that teaches leadership and self-motivation.  I believe that coaches of youth leagues can keep score to teach kids (and parents) how to win and lose.  Also, I believe there are politicians out there that can inspire us to be better.  I hope they do not take the easy way out and promise what they cannot give, but motivate people to be their best.

We can either take responsibility for our future and lead our circle of influence or we can be complacent/hypocritical and complain about all the people who do not take responsibility.  It is kind of like all the people who say they hate people who judge others, even though they are judging that group of individuals themselves.

This is your time to change your routine, even if it is mentoring one person, so that we can begin to mold this country.

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