Do you know someone who is constantly blaming everyone else for his/her misfortunes? Someone who is convinced and would like you and everyone around them to believe that every unfortunate situation that has happened to them is everyone’s fault, but their own? If so, then what you might want to know is that their only hope is to stop blaming, and pick up a mirror.
It’s very common for people to “cast stones” and blame others for the problems in their life – a possible defense mechanism people use to cope with problems. And why wouldn’t we want to find fault – especially if the fault is no fault of your own, but someone else’s.
The truth of the matter is while blaming others may make us feel better about ourselves; in the long run, it does not serve us, as it prevents us from living our full potential. Further, if we never look within for the solutions to our problems, how can we learn from our mistakes? This may be why some people create luck while others stay stuck!
When we deflect blame onto others, what we are really doing is shifting our attention on to someone else so that not only is someone else responsible for our problems, but we also don’t have to reflect on our part in the problem.
Everyone has had an obstacle arise in his or her life at one time or another. But what allows us to work through obstacles, and to find viable solutions is our ability to reflect, and that means picking up a mirror and taking a look at our role in these dilemmas.
For instance, right before a problem occurs there are always signals alerting us to something we need to pay attention to. But, what happens for some people is that they ignore the signs – they feel lost, confused or overwhelmed – and they simply avoid the issue, thereby missing the opportunity to identify and resolve their problems.
It’s only as we learn to face our problems that our problems get simpler and easier to manage when they arise. Here is a six-step process I guide my client’s through to help them stop blaming, look in the mirror and work through their problems:
1. Take a look at how you’re contributing to your problem: When we can see what we could have done differently to better our situation we not only create the space to learn and grow from the situation, but we feel more empowered in the process.
2. Try to relive the situation, but this time instead of placing the blame on someone else, take FULL responsibility for your actions and feelings: When we take full responsibility for our actions or inactions – whether anyone else was to blame or not – we allow ourselves to learn, grow and emerge from past, present or future problems that resemble the current situation.
3. Pay attention to the signs and signals rather than ignoring or avoiding them: When we pay attention to the signs we can address the matter should it reoccur or we can prevent that issue from reoccurring because we allowed ourselves to learn and grow from the experience.
4. Be more forgiving and understanding: Many times we blame others because we lack the ability to forgive ourselves for our misfortunes and the understanding of our situation. However, the only way to expand our way of thinking, we must face the challenges that may arise so that we have the knowledge and the experience that is required to emerge and move forward.
5. Ask yourself what you would do differently the next time this problem occurs: Many times we will encounter the same problem over and over again until we can appreciate the lesson we must learn so that we can move forward. The next time a problem arises, rather than ignoring it, come up with some plausible solutions. Dealing with our problems may be frustrating, but remember, as we get better at problem-solving, we grow in wisdom, we tap into the creative process, and we express our full potential.
Previously published on Huffington Post.
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