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Don’t Be Chained To Whatever You Blame.

my authentic me Jun 20, 2022

It’s so easy to blame people and circumstances for everything that goes wrong in your life?  The truth is, the blame game is no fun to play and there are never any winners. And, perhaps, the biggest loser of all is the one who is doing all the blaming. When we blame others, we lose our power. Remaining stuck in our feelings of anger, resentment or abandonment only hurts us, not the other person. Brene Brown explains that blame has an inverse relationship with accountability.  It literally gets us off the hook.  Makes us feel better.  Gives us a sense of control.  But it has destructive consequences.  

Blame is an example of defensiveness, one of the communication killers, a form of self-protection that places us in a one-up stance (righteousness) or one-down (playing the victim).  This leads to a lack of empathy and understanding in relationships and makes it hard to listen and understand the other person.  

The first step is realizing you are playing the blame game.  Ask yourself the following questions: 

  • Is your life consistently ridden with conflict, drama, “bad luck,” ups and downs, and relationship issues, personally or professionally?
  • Do you fail to take responsibility for conflicts and problems as well as the consequences they cause?
  • Do you point the finger in order to avoid accountability for the things that go wrong in life?
  • Do you always think you’re right and rarely admit mistakes?

If you answered yes to these questions, you my friend, are playing the blame game.   If you’ve been playing the blame game, here are a few reasons why you need to stop:

Blaming Takes Our Attention from Personal Growth

When we’re busy blaming others for our woes and tribulations, we pay little attention to our own behaviors and how they may have contributed to the “wrong” that was done to us. Spending our time thinking of others in such a negative way does not allow for any time to personally reflect and take stock in who we are and how we have moved through our life so far.  When you stop playing the blame game, you give yourself the time and space to grow as a person.

Your Reality Becomes Distorted

When we are busy playing the blame game we loose our ability to interact, reason, and think in a healthy manner.  When we are too busy playing the victim we fail to see our own actions that lead to the negative outcome.  Blaming only others will eventually lead to loosing precious relationships with friends and family  You will quickly find yourself isolated from those that matter most.  

We Lose Our Freedom

Personal freedom is key to a happy life. You become a slave to the blame game.  It lies and tells us that are miserable, that no one understands, no one is there for us, and that we should be resentful or angry.  The main thing to realize is that placing blame is like a drug.  It may feel good at first, but once addicted you loose everything and everyone that is important to you. 

If you are chained to what you blame there is hope. You can break this toxic cycle.  Learn to accept responsibility, stop using blame as a scapegoat, lower your defenses, and begin to realize the starring role you play in your life.  Know that it is up to you to have successful, rewarding relationships.  It is up to you to learn from your mistakes.  It’s up to you to practice self-awareness. It’s up to you to hold yourself accountable. It is up to you to make wise choices.  And it is up to you to apologize and make amends when wrong. 

Wondering how to stop playing the blame game?  Try implementing the following tools and skills:

1. Recognize when you’re blaming your circumstances or other people.

Notice when you are using words such as “always”or “never.” Also notice excessive use of “you” instead of “I.”  If you see this pattern it is alright.  Restart and refocus with healthy approach.

2. Own your own story.

You alone are responsible for your thoughts, feelings, actions, and reactions to what life throws at you. If you’re in a conflict with someone, practice finding something to take ownership of.  Take responsibility for your actions and reactions.

3. Pause before responding. 

It is human nature to be in flight or fight mode when we feel threatened.  It is almost impossible to remain in a rational state of mind.   Hit pause, take a break, and calm down before you choose how to respond. This is necessary in order to get some perspective on the situation.  When we’re emotional or “hot” in the moment, our natural instinct is going to be to shift blame and responsibility.  Look at things from another angle.  Take a look at yourself.  Picture the other person involved as their best sefl, rather than worst.  Assume the best intentions.  Responding rather than reacting in the moment is one of the wisest things you can do for yourself.

4. Apologize 

If you’re really taking ownership and responsibility for your life, this shouldn’t be impossible to do. Do not make excuses to get out of apologizing.  Be humble and vulnerable and say it.  If you mess up, fess up.


By stoping the blame game you open new, healthier relationships and coping skills during challenging times. You optimize your chances of improving performance by:

  • Lowering worker anxiety;
  • Increasing employee candor and creativity;
  • Improving organizational justice; and
  • Systematically reducing your failure rate.

 So, the next time you feel lead to point the finger of blame,  begin by asking what role you and others may have played in things going wrong. Then, have the courage to admit your fault to your team and focus the team’s attention on how performance might be improved in the future rather than making an example of someone. Taking this approach may feel very uncomfortable at first, but the benefits you will realize over the long term will be substantial


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