Black and white image of dark haired woman pointing figure at dark haired man with short sleeve white shirt with short black tie. the man is pointing his finger at himself.


Who’s fault is it, anyway? Finger-pointing is a common battle where everybody loses. Most of us can relate to being blamed, blaming others or not admitting when we are to blame. Regardless of the situation, when blame is involved, we don’t feel happy or successful. In today’s article, we’ll take a closer look at why we blame, how it reduces our chance of success and ways to up our game to win.

Why do we blame?

We blame because we are embarrassed to admit to others and ourself that we failed (or things aren’t going as we hoped). The psychological term for this is projection. We don’t take responsibility for our own thoughts, feelings and actions and instead, we project them onto someone else. Two classic examples of this are, one—the person who accuses their partner of cheating when they themselves are cheating and, two—the person who is dramatic and unstable who accuses others of being the same.

Blame enables failure

When we believe that life or other people are to blame for our “problems”, we enable ourselves to continue to partake in the addictive behaviors that lead to failure. We buy into our own story that we are a victim of life and others. Many who do this are in denial and don’t admit that we’re a victim—because it soothes part of us. This can be difficult to accept. Recently, a person who heard me speaking on this topic asked me indignantly, “Why would anyone want to fail? Everyone wants to succeed!” Consciously, this may be true, however, unconsciously, it may be false. If we’re accustomed to failure, it may feel oddly comforting and familiar. Also, being a victim has perks, like sympathy from others, pity sex (just today I heard a man say, “I get stuff when I come home and say I’ve had a rough day”), money from “authority figures” and extra attention from “friends”.  In addition, there may be part of us that is afraid of succeeding and growing. Afraid of how our lives might change, and who may need to leave our life or who we may need to leave, because they no longer supportive of us when we choose success and successful behaviors.

Blame is a trap

The quickest way to know if we’re playing the blame game, is to listen when we talk about our life. Below are two quick examples:

Do we hold blame in our past?

If someone asks us how our last relationship ended, do we blame our ex? If so, we’re playing the blame game. We haven’t taken the time to reflect and do the “inner observation” to see how we may have contributed to our ex’s behavior. We’re stuck, and haven’t learned our lesson.

Do we blame our current circumstances?

What’s to blame for our current “problems?” Think of one that really bugs us. Maybe it’s lack of money. What circumstances or who do we blame for that? If we do not take the time to really get to know ourself and how we may have caused this, we can get stuck in the cycle of always having that same problem, because we have not done our part to change.

The wisest people blame no one. If we’re blaming anything or anybody for what’s happening (or not happening) in life, then we have some growing up (learning) to do (about ourself) and how life works.

The flipside: blame v. responsibility

What can we do if we’re caught in the cyclical cycle of blame?  There is a flipside.  It requires courage.  It requires change. It requires chutzpa (aka balls).  To live on the flipside, where it’s sunnier, lighter and more interesting more of the time, we choose to ALLEVIATE OUR PAIN, instead of RE-LIVING our pain by blaming and making the same mistakes.  To alleviate our pain, we ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY for our life, health, body, family and work.  This requires that we blame no one, and take a good look in the mirror.  THE FLIPSIDE OF BLAME IS TO STEP UP OUR OWN GAME.

Are you ready?

If you’re ready to own your life and step up your game, you may want to consider these three questions about whatever may be troubling you:

1) Ask yourself, “What part did I play in this?”

2) What healthy change CAN I make to not allow this to happen again?

3) How CAN I hold myself accountable to make this change happen?

Will You?

Will you UP your own game? Share your thoughts and feelings so we may grow in strength and willpower together …

Always with love,

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