The coworker I didn’t get along with — they were the bully.
The arguments with my husband — he was being difficult.
The long hours at a job with no end in sight — my boss was unrealistic.
The job that slowly was killing my soul — we needed the money.
And then after a long talk with my coach, who wasn’t letting me blame others for the “situation” I was in, I woke up and saw what she saw. I was a willing and equal participant in this game of “poor me.” I had spent years (years!) blaming others for things in my life that I didn’t like and giving myself credit for what I did like. Instead of owning my contribution, as I did for what was working well, I was deflecting any responsibility.
You will sit as a passive but willing participant each time you blame others for the state of your situation. And in the wise words of my coach, whatever bothers us the most is often exactly where we need to look to discover a new truth about ourselves. If someone is hitting your “Oh, hell no, F-you button,” it’s likely because it’s triggering an insecurity or something else about ourselves that we don’t like.
So instead of giving them the evil eye, send them an appreciative smile for giving you a clue about where you need healing. Then leave them the fuck alone and go get to work on yourself.
You’ll know when you’re playing the victim. You’ll feel hopeless, blame others or agree to settle. In these moments, you will give up your own ambition and divine right for joyous, soul-satisfying expression, and instead, hand over the reins to someone else.
Personally, I chose to give up the role of victim. I chose to accept what I experience — the good and the bad– as clues to better understand myself and where I need to heal. What brings me joy tells me where to direct my ambition, and what brings me anger tells me where to direct my compassion, for myself and others. We all have wounds, some deeper than others, but it is possible to heal by showing up for yourself, doing the work and giving yourself what you never got — or what was taken from you by someone else.
Ask yourself what it means about YOU when someone does something that makes you retreat or strike back in rage. A coach or therapist can be a great partner to help you explore these areas, but if you don’t have one yet, you can at least start to gather the clues as to where you could use some healing.
Once you take responsibility for whatever is broken in your life, the power is back on your side.
What can you do, today, to move out of blame and into ownership? Ownership for where you are today, and where you want to go?
Your awesome life is in your hands. So get out of your own way. Your spirit is strong. Your ambition is within. Turn your energy toward I CAN and go after the life that has you waking up with giddy excitement for the day ahead. It is possible. Begin to believe it, and you will feel it.
If you’ve enjoyed this story, you’ll likely love my upcoming series centered around how to find your way. Stay updated with my latest articles and join a community of people searching for better.
Originally published at medium.com