Blaming others is casting yourself in the role of victim. This is a straight shot to pain, disappointment and ineffectiveness. This misguided attitude minimizes your ability to live a fruitful, powerful and rewarding life. It restricts your options, blocks your ability to make your goals and dreams come true and weakens your confidence in yourself. Believing you are a victim and acting like has seriously negative effects on your relationships. The victim role is a form of self-pity. This attitude alienates others. We are vulnerable to a victim attitude in times of crisis.

“Victimology” — blaming our problems on other people and circumstances — is directly related to learned helplessness. Learned helplessness is a well-documented phenomenon in which an individual does not believe that his/her actions matter in terms of how things turn out. Self-pity is corrosive and destructive. There is only one answer; take responsibility whenever it is possible, and increase the power in your life. Take responsibility, be accountable, hold others accountable for what they can control, refuse to think like a victim and take control of your thoughts, feelings, words and actions.

If you are caught in this trap extricating yourself will be one of the healthiest changes you’ll ever make. No matter who or what has wronged you, it will not bring you psychological health or self-confidence to choose the victim mentality. Victims are often poisoned by resentment toward others and dwell in self-denigration. If you have been seriously abused and cannot get past your injuries, I would recommend you seek professional help. This can be tough territory to go alone. Otherwise, get past it by looking at it from the power point. Power comes from taking action in your life. Consider taking action in crisis instead of feeling like a victim; //blog.melschwartz.com/2011/10/20/turning-crisis-into-opportunity/#more-434

How do people get seduced by the victim role? I can think of some ways. There may be increased attention from others who feel sorry for the self-anointed victim. Maybe a way to avoid taking responsibility. Or feeling like a victim might serve as an excuse to avoid some circumstance that evokes fear or that is regarded as distasteful. Or perhaps, ensconcing oneself in this role is a way to feel special.

The victim role is yet another example of distorted thinking. Just as in the other types of destructive self-talk, identify the thoughts, beliefs and expectations that are faulty, then counter them with an empowering, non-reactive discourse. Identify instances in your thinking and imagery in which you have ordained yourself the dreaded victim. Use distraction techniques, such as thought stopping, to reduce the frequency, intensity and duration of your misguided thinking and disputing techniques to challenge these clearly counterproductive thoughts and images. Employ healthy self-care, fellowship with emotionally solid people and take control of your life.