1. the opportunity or ability to act independently and take decisions without authorization


When we were growing up we craved to be independent. We thought we knew everything when in fact we knew nothing. We would not take advice from well-meaning adults, be it teachers, parents or otherwise. When advice was offered many of us were guilty of rolling our eyes and saying ‘I know’ when in fact we didn’t know much at all.



So now we have left education, we’ve got our degrees in the bank and it’s down to us to actually take on real responsibilities. Whether you have just left, you left five years ago or are broaching 30, we have all had moments of wanting to bury our heads in the sand. Like a child not wanting to do something, you want to stamp your feet, storm upstairs or just shout ‘NO!’ because there are a lot of new responsibilities that we just don’t want to do. Now you are only too willing to accept advice from anyone still patient enough to give it to you.


Where is the manual telling you what to do? You wonder why at university there hadn’t been compulsory modules in ‘Life’, because sometimes you find yourself questioning just how well you are doing at it yourself and sometimes the verdict isn’t so favourable.



The more responsibilities we take on, the further we get away from our youth and I believe it is the idea of this that scares us more than the actual responsibility in question. You consider what you now ‘have to do’, compared to what you didn’t have to do five years ago. That is the cycle of life though isn’t it? and our first thought, shouldn’t be to run.


Run away and never come back, no I will not face the music.



Like a plaster, sometimes you just have to suck it up and rip it off. It may initially hurt, but the pain subsides and the skin starts to heal. We are resilient to change and we are highly adaptable as humans. So face the music and rip it off, because the only way things can get better is if you take the first steps to make them that way. Whether it’s paying a bill, resigning from a job, taking on a new role or doing something outside of your comfort zone, none of these things may make us feel good. At least not at first, but by taking action you are taking control of your life. You are the person navigating just where you want to go and that feeling should exhilarate you. You have taken the first steps to leading your life in the direction that you want.



I think responsibility is connected to opportunity. You never hear the saying ‘running away from opportunities’ do you? We are responsible for carving out our futures, despite how unsure and uncertain they may sometimes appear. Don’t run away from responsibility because in doing so you may indirectly find yourself running away from glorious opportunities.


We have days of feeling overwhelmed and unsure of exactly what we should be doing, wondering whether ‘everyone feels like this too’? You can be rest assured that they do, it’s human nature to have self-doubt and having a little self-doubt isn’t always bad anyway, as it makes us cautious.


We’ll call our parents and friends, who suddenly double up as informal therapists who can offer their thoughts on what you should do, but ultimately it is your responsibility to make that final choice. You’re not leading your life for your friends and families anyway, you’re leading it for yourself. Make these ‘life decisions’ based on what you know is right for you and maybe through making these choices, you will open doors to opportunity that you’d never have uncovered if you’d had run away.




Twenty Mile Club