It is always surprising when I hear people saying things like: It’s the economy, if only I had had a better childhood, if only my boss was not ….
And it is surprising because these stories make them VICTIM.
I know when I point that out, most people are offended that I consider that they are making themselves victim. Usually I don’t understand they had a really difficult time and it was really not their fault.
The point is that I am not suggesting that it was their fault in any way.
But by going over this story again and again and again, they are constantly reminding themselves that they have been a victim and they make themselves victim for anybody around them.
From a 6 human need theory point of view, it makes sense. By being a victim, or having a serious enough problem, people get significance, they get connection with the people who listen to their story and feel for them, they get certainty and variety. All in high level.
They are addicted and they can not break the habit. Unless they decide that it is enough.
Change is always scary. And this state of feeling like a victim is a safe problem. In this state, people meet their needs and it is a problem they know, why would they change.
Some people live with it and accept that it is the way life is and are resigned to live a life where life happens to them and where they have no control.
But the people I meet (and I was one of them) have those sad sobbing stories but they rebel against them. (and I sure did) They don’t accept the state of their situation. They fight and they use all their energy to bit the system, to bit the odds. And they are strong, so they fight for a very long time.
But there is this old saying: What you resist persists!
And it is true. If you fight something, a part of your life, a situation, you are fighting a loosing battle. And you position yourself as the one with no choice, no other choice than to fight. Again a position of victim!
But we always have a choice. Always.
I usually know that in order to be where they are, in order to survive what they wen trough, they had to be strong to start with.
I remind people of that fact, once they get over the fact that this story has become an excuse to be angry, to be active but in a negative way.
Your action and reaction is the only thing you will ever have true control over. EVER.
So, I encourage them to change their perspective on their story.
By becoming aware of what they spend their time thinking, I AM A VICTIM, they realise that while they so want to be strong and confident, they constantly remind themselves about the time they were weak and overwhelmed. And the constant reminder hinders their chance to be strong and confident, because they always have in mind their weak point.
While they had a traumatic experience, their handling of that situation was exemplary and the fact that they have been able to move on from that point and function and succeed is very impressive. It talks about a very strong, resilient personality.
Quite often, people resist that suggestion that they are strong and resilient.
Because they are under the impression that most people do survive and strive after a trauma.
But it could not be further from the truth. Most people break down and never recover. Never function properly again. And remain down for the rest of their life.
They have not. And they should give themselves credit for this.
We challenge the roots of their story. The events and their associated lingering feelings that have trapped the person in this very comfortable prison. A self-imposed prison.
I know it is not easy to accept.
But I am here to tell you that if you remain a victim in your mind, you give your power away to other people. If you take responsibility for your whole life, the good and the not so good that happened to you, you are regaining control over your life.
It does not mean that you accept what happened to you, you just decide that what happened happened and that your past does not influence your future.
And in doing so, you are choosing to feel differently about what happened in your life, about how people are treating you and about what will happen later. You decide to focus on what is happening that is good. And you decide to let go of the past, because it is not serving you today!
In doing so, you stop being a slave to your past and you can confidently and with resilience look at the future and know that you can handle whatever will happen tomorrow. You have in the past, you will again!
It is your choice. ALWAYS
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