The human brain is a marvelous piece of machinery, designed to take in unfathomable amounts of complex information, sort out the relevant data from the static, figure out the appropriate course of action and is able to do all of this in the matter of a heartbeat.
One way the brain is able to manage this magnificent feat is by placing learnt information into categories; Good, bad, right, wrong, safe, dangerous and more. We can see examples of this from childhood when we are learning how to navigate our way through life, playing cops and robbers and hearing bed time stories of good versus evil.
To be able to place things into quick black and white tags we are forced to turn our attention away from all information that blur these lines. An example of this is as follows; We are told drinking water is good for us and drinking alcohol is bad. In this example we are forced to ignore the fact that the excessive drinking of water can kill you just as the consumption of a small glass of wine a night can actually be healthy for us.
This example is also true for the blame game. For the blame game to work one person needs to become the victim and the other a persecutor. The victim is being forced to suffer and nothing they do can change that. With this view point we are forced to ignore the other person’s perspective. In a dispute between two people each of them are left in a position where they feel like the victim and thus unable to communicate.
The victim role has a significant negative impact upon our self esteem. For self esteem to grow we need to have appreciation of our strengths as well as an awareness of our weaknesses. We need to be able to speak our truth and be able to take steps towards self development. The victim role makes us feel useless, unheard and unable to move forward.
To begin building your self esteem and move away from the blame game follow these three simple steps:
1) Look at the situation- In life things happen, some which are pleasant and others that are less so. When a situation materialises itself you have an opportunity to overcome it. This change in perspective is empowering and spurs you on to find compromises, resolutions and builds your self esteem.
2) Look for the learning – Every single experience that you have gives you the opportunity of learning (if you choose to see it). When you find the lesson you are then able to decide to try something different next time.
3) Create realistic goals- Set yourself goals that you can realistically meet and see them through. Nothing builds self esteem more than being able to meet a hurdle head on and navigate your way through it.
Invariably, the path to self discovery is a rocky one and the old desire to play the blame game may resurface. However with this knowledge you are now in the position to better recognize when this is happening and take the appropriate action out of it.