The Problem With Being a Victim
The anger, the betrayal, the resentment, the excuses, the self-pity, the vindication. What do all of these have in common? Well, they are all aligned with the victim mentality.
Now it is true, people can sometimes be cruel, selfish, and self-entitled, and these behaviors, when projected onto us, can make us feel like victims. With that said, however, if we choose to stay in that victim mode we will actually become the very thing that we do not want to be.
Many of us believe that things just happen to us, and that we have no control over what others say or do that makes us feel so bad. But, in truth, we have a lot more power than we realize to create the experiences that we want to have. It’s true, perhaps we cannot change or control others’ behaviors and choices, but we can choose how we will respond, and what we will and won’t allow into our own lives.
Furthermore, we are each in full control of our own emotions and reactions (or at least we can be) and, therefore, we can always find ways to maintain our composure, perspective, and peace of mind. But all of this has to start as an inside job, which we can only master when we stop seeing ourselves as victims (or martyrs) and start seeing ourselves as the masters of our own destiny.
Too many of us give up the reins to a happy life. Too many of us throw our hands up in the air when setbacks arise and proclaim that we are doomed to live as we are with no hope for change. But we cannot be empowered and at the same time continue to blame everyone and everything around us for our failures, struggles, misery, and misfortunes. Consequently, we cannot continue to see ourselves as victims of circumstance because that will simply leave us in the same position, with no seeming way out.
The thing is, as long as we continue to focus on our perceived problems, the longer and harder it will be for us to come to a viable solution. Sure, wallowing in self-pity for a moment is fine, and may even be healthy if it helps us vent our frustrations. But getting ourselves out of victim consciousness has to be our priority because it is the most practical action we can take. If not, we will end up narrowing our options and then what will we have left? If we stay in victim mode, what could possibly change?
So, for the sake of our own survival and happiness we must get up, dust ourselves off, and try again. Otherwise we will never know what it’s like to realize our full potential and create the life we want to live. The financial markets are rough? Find a way around it or opportunities in spite of it. Can’t find the house you want? Compromise until you can. It’s raining outside? Take an umbrella. Keep getting passed up for a promotion at work? Speak up, do better, or move on.
There is always a solution if we look for one, but it will only come if we are open to it. And we can only be open to it if we take our fate and put it into our own hands. If you do not like the way you are being treated, simply do not allow it anymore. If you do not like the way your life is going, stop, regroup, and start anew. You have two options here. Give up or keep going. And if you choose the latter you will see your life greatly improve with each transformed belief, and with each new day seen through the lens of proactive choice and possibility.
Always remember, the rainbow always appears after the rain. Meaning, expect the miracle and you will receive it. Expect a solution and it will show up.
To be clear, I am not at all dismissing or underestimating the pain and suffering some people endure in life, often without any logical explanation as to why. However, even real victims can get their power back by deciding that they will do everything they can to feel empowered again. One foot in front of the other, one moment at a time, things will start to change for the better if we only give ourselves the space and opportunity for that to happen.
So whether you have been truly victimized or you feel truly victimized, know that you have it in you to shift your perceptions and regain the confidence you need to start fresh. No one said it will be easy, but what other option do you really have that will end just as well?
I’m not going to lie. In the short-term it does seem so much easier to place all of the blame onto others. It takes such a load off in terms of our own personal responsibility. And it gives us an excuse to stay stuck. But does this really make us feel better in the long-run? Will the misery really go away the more we complain about it? Or will the patterns simply repeat?
I know it’s hard to be self-responsible and ask yourself what you might be doing that, at least in some part, attracts these types of circumstances and people into your life. But the point isn’t to get lost in self-analysis or to feel ashamed or angry at yourself. The point, plain and simple, is to become the master of your own domain….no longer at the mercy of other people’s moods, behaviors, or actions, and no longer controlled by your external environment. Yes, thinking in this way is a long-term investment, but your ROI will speak for itself.
Remember, being self-responsible is not so much about trying to figure out what you’ve done “wrong,” because that would be a judgment. Rather, it’s about figuring out the type of energy with which you have been aligning and then deciding to change that consciously in order to manifest something better. Please understand, this is not an exercise in self-punishment; it is an exercise in self-empowerment!