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Blame Is a Zero Sum Game

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Finger-pointing in the workplace is fairly common, especially if the person doing the pointing is feeling insecure about their job, or themselves. So how do you address that?

We have all blamed someone or something at some point, but if you dig a little deeper, you will find that the blame was simply avoiding your own responsibility in the situation.

If you find yourself quick to blame others for what’s not working in your life, take a good look at what drives this thought.

If you judge others for what they are not capable of, but forget that many of the things you stand in judgment for are the same things you do, where’s the disconnect?

One of the ways in which we learn to step out of blame is…

Take 100% responsibility for all your choices and decisions.

There is no one else to blame for wrong choices, wrong decisions or mistakes that could have been avoided. But that’s easier said than done, right?

I’ve been married for over 35 years, and in that time, we’ve done plenty of blaming. But my responsibility was made perfectly clear one day when he told me I had made a choice to be with him, and therefore anything that happened was because I was accepting it. It was my choice.

This is an interesting concept. When I examined my life from the earliest days until now, I could see many instances where I had made the wrong choices or decisions, and it was no one’s fault but my own.

This is a hard one for many to swallow, but it’s actually the truth. We are all 100% responsible for pretty much everything that happens in our life, even when it looks like we had nothing to do with it. At some point, you made a decision, right or wrong.

It takes practice and constant repetition of new behavior to change things and accept responsibility for the outcomes. But it’s not impossible, and to step out of the blame game you must begin to review your choices, decisions and actions that lead to the situation.

Start by asking yourself some basic questions:

When things go wrong, do you quickly blame other people or circumstances for the results? Do you universally lump people together as ‘incompetents’ or ‘unlikable’?

What would happen if you took a more exploratory role in finding out what people need, or want? Do you think you could find a different response? After all, mistakes are part of the growth process. We are all failing our way to success.

Even when it doesn’t look like it, we made a choice to engage with the circumstance or person. 

Are you living with a list of rules and regulations that when violated condemn anyone who crosses the line? Do you seek perfection and are disappointed in yourself or in others when it is not reached?

Perfection is an illusion. Things can be almost perfect, but rarely are. Life is continual growth, or we stagnate.

Is there a need to be right operating in your world? Do you insist on being right, even when all the evidence says you are wrong? Does it lead to defensive behavior in order to justify your opinions?

What would your world look like if you accepted that you were wrong and moved on?

Stepping out the blame game is a choice? Taking 100% responsibility for your life is a choice.

Ask yourself this:

What will it take for me to step away from blaming people and circumstances for any discontent or unhappiness in my life? How could I do this differently?

Making better choices, taking full responsibility for EVERYTHING in your life, and being willing to change what’s not working for you is the first step toward becoming someone you can admire.

Last note: Remember when one finger is pointing forward, there are three more pointing back at you.

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