Responsible To Not For

I’m often asked by readers and those at my live seminars how
to deal with the fact that not everyone will be responsive
to learning the principles of positive persuasion.

After all, not only does utilizing these skills improve our
lives, get us more of what we want, result in less stress,
more prosperity and bring us lots of other “goodies”, but we
desire that those we love and care about benefit from them
as well.

Still, some of them just won’t go for it. Why not? Well, as
Jim Rohn would say, “I don’t know – they just won’t.” :-)

And that’s so true.

Some are ruled by their belief systems (including
“win/lose”, “it’s ‘dog-eat-dog’ out there”, “You’ve got to
get them before they get you”, etc.) to such a point that
they are simply not open to learning something new, even
though this “new thing” could make them a lot happier and
more effective.

The question we might ask ourselves is, “Should I still try
and teach them?”

My answer is “Yes” for two reasons.

#1 Because, just by teaching this methodology to someone
else, you yourself will become more proficient. As you
probably already know, the best way to learn something is to
teach it.

#2 If you believe it’s the right thing to do, you should go
for it. The Sages tell us, “It’s not your job to complete
the task, but you are not excused from making the effort.”
In other words, if something is worth doing, go ahead and
try your very best. Whether or not the results are what you
want, at least you know you upheld your “part of the

Of course, this applies not only to sharing the skills of
Winning Without Intimidation, but of anything you deem
worthwhile. There are books I read that I know could help
certain people, and so I make the suggestion.

Some of them listen; others don’t. Do I feel badly when they
don’t? Of course I do (I’d be fibbing if I told you
otherwise) but I always remember something shared with me by
a very wise man named Bill Gove.

Ahhhh, Bill was one of my early speaking mentors, as he was
for just about everyone else in the business. This great man
passed on several years ago. Very few human beings were as
kind, thoughtful and generous as Bill.

I once confided to Bill that I felt badly knowing that even
though I poured my heart out to my audiences to give them
helpful info that they were paying to hear, so few of them
would actually ever use it to the degree they needed to, and
others wouldn’t at all. Same with people who purchased my

My question to him was basically, “How can I justify selling
my services when so few people percentage-wise will ever use
the information and benefit from it.” His wise, thoughtful
response is something I’ve carried with me to this day.

He said, “Bob, you are responsible to your audience, but not
for them. You are responsible to them in that it is your job
to be prepared, put forth the very best information you can
and share it in such a way that it can be utilized. You are
responsible to your audience to do that.

But you are not responsible for them. You cannot control who
chooses to use that information and benefit from it. That is
up to them.”

What terrific advice for each of us. And, I believe it
applies to all of the life’s lessons and skills we choose to
share with others in order to help them, as others have
helped us. And, it’s so helpful to always keep in mind the
attitude of responsible to but not for is because…

#1 If we have too much emotion invested in their taking the
action we want them to take it’ll show through, and that
person will probably follow the human tendency to resist
that which they feel is being pushed upon them.


#2 When we can walk away without emotional attachment to the
results, or have what I call “Positive Detachment” it
strengthens us when trying to help the next person. And that
person might just listen.
Bob Burg