Responsibility is also a major cornerstone of effective anger management. Real responsibility means neither credit, nor blame. It is a stance we take to personally take charge of our lives and to always acknowledge the role we – as well as others – play in the problem and conflicts we experience. One of the central aspects of all of our relationships is how we respond when things don’t go as we want. Do we blame other people, outside influences, or the relationship itself whenever we experience a lack of satisfaction? Or do we view such problems as signals that we need to learn to grow ourselves? Are we going to try to change or control the other person in order to be happy, or are we going to recognize that our own happiness comes primarily from the stuff we generate – or fail to generate – within ourselves?
Unfortunately, many cultural sources encourage us to adopt a victim’s role. These forces tell us that we are not responsive for our problems and we do not have the resources to create our own satisfaction and happiness.