Raise your hand if you love to blame. ??♀️
And if you don’t have your hand up, you’re lying.
We humans loooove to blame! It’s so easy because we can blame, well, almost anything. The issue is, we’re often not aware that we’re in blame mode…it has simply become our default/kneejerk reaction anytime we’re uncomfortable.
And although it’s true that we can’t really control our in-the-moment reactions, you CAN control how you respond.
Because you always have a choice.
Let me paint the picture for you of how blame often plays out in everyday life (especially when we don’t choose the circumstances we find ourselves in):
- Your car breaks down and fixing it means draining your bank account leaving you feeling vulnerable and stressed. Not your choice. So you blame it on bad luck.
- Being declared “redundant” at work. Not your choice. So you blame it on the economy.
- A partner leaving you after 10 years of marriage. Not your choice. So you blame the failed relationship on them.
Blame shows up when we don’t want to own our part in the situation. It’s how we discharge our anger and hurt. It’s 100% natural to react with blame and again, we all do it (myself most definitely included). But blame never helps us heal.
Blame allows us to avoid feeling vulnerable and admit that we’re hurting (or that we effed it up). It’s so much easier (aka ego-preserving) to blame others, your job, the weather, your lack of time, God, bad luck, the traffic, the randomness of life, etc. for the uncomfortable situation you’re in.
Blaming others also automatically puts us into victim mode. We don’t have to be accountable for our lives – we see it as something happening TO us instead of FOR us. And we definitely don’t have to muster the courage to look at our role in whatever it was that happened.
If you’re waiting for the circumstances to change, it means you don’t have to.
It gives away your power.
The choice we have is how we show up in those circumstances. Once you understand that you always have a choice in how you respond you can begin to take responsibility for your words/thoughts/actions and change the stories you’re telling yourself. Freedom from the stories that are keeping us stuck starts with one brave new choice at a time.
So, how do you know if you’re avoiding the trauma/deeper issues in favour of the blame game?
Follow the clues the world is giving you.
- You’re always dating X type of person and it never ends well.
- You’re always getting a new job only to find yourself disheartened in 6 months.
- Look at the times you feel triggered and you’re not sure why – when the reaction is disproportionate to the crime.
- Whenever you find yourself saying, “I don’t know why this keeps happening to me?!”, look for the patterns that keep showing up in your life…when was the first time you remember feeling this way?
- When people bring out the worst in you (texting this very message to my friends is how I knew my ex wasn’t the one for me)
When you look outside yourself for the answers you miss the deeper message. You miss an opportunity to heal. These patterns are repeating because they’re trying to get your attention. You need to goldmine (a.k.a. explore with openness and curiosity) those shadows and find the clues to WHY these patterns keep showing up in your life.
Another clue you might be trying to avoid doing the REAL work is always looking for the quick tips and tricks (i.e. 5 easy steps to mental clarity and flat abs!) You need to go to the basement of your soul, the shadows, the root of your stories to heal the patterns and begin to make new choices (remember freedom is found one brave new choice at a time).
What does REAL work look like?
- Sometimes it’s a damn good cry. Or releasing anger in a kick-boxing class. We’re often so scared of feeling anything bad that we fight it. We rally against it and what it really needs is just space to be felt and seen.
- Meditation – even 1 minute daily will work wonders!
- Journalling – it’s easier to process it all when it’s in front of you.
- Talking with a friend/coach/therapist who can ask the right questions and hold space for you to find the clarity you’re craving (high-fives to all my verbal processors!)
- Choosing thoughts/words/actions that are in alignment with what you want. What can you do/say (or not do/not say) that helps you get a little bit closer to your desired outcome?
No one has the answers FOR you. Only you do. This is the difference between coaching and traditional talk therapy. Traditional therapy is a safe space to dig into old traumas. In coaching, I ask a lot of really annoying questions that you’ve probably already asked yourself but were too scared to take the time to dive into and answer. I help you get unstuck and move forward by uncovering the wisdom already inside you.
When you stop blaming external factors for your current reality it doesn’t negate the heartache you felt – if frees you to make radically different and empowered choices for yourself.
And isn’t that what you want for your life? To feel radically empowered and free?
Raise your hand up if you do. ??♀️