October 7, 2015

Let's be honest...we've all played the blame game in our lives - some more than others.  Some of us have even become masterful at blame shifting and excusing ourselves from taking responsibility for our screw-ups.


Conversely, some of us have also learned to take full responsibility for our lives and own our successes and our missteps.  


Personal responsibility is a's a trait that people have to relearn because we've been taught to shift the blame to others.


Think about politics...both sides of the aisle are always trying to find a patsy to lay the blame on.   We pick up on those queues with our subconscious minds.  Think about the news...if we hear a report about a car accident, one of the first things we may think is, "Who's fault was it?"  In every aspect of our lives, we always seem to want to find out who we can blame.  


I remember becoming a target for a host of angry comments in a discussion thread about this story -- HYPEREDUCATED AND ON WELFARE -- in which a lady who has a PhD., and is an adjunct professor, is having hard times and is on food stamps.  Now, I have the utmost empathy for her...our family has been on food stamps in the past too.  In this lady's case, the article makes the issue about how adjuncts receive shitty pay and just aren't treated well by the higher ed institutions who hire them.


Okay...I can understand that.  And in my comment that I left on the article, I simply recommended that perhaps she can seek other online learning adjunct positions with various schools.


OH DAMN - The comments started raining toward me...


"You don't understand the problem."  

"Maybe if universities paid better, adjuncts wouldn't be on welfare."

"You're so blind to reality."

"I can tell by your snarky reply that you've never struggled."

Really?  So because I suggested that she begin to look for other opportunities or even create her own opportunities...I'm the asshole who doesn't understand struggling?

The internet provides a great mask for people...and people LOVE to make assumptions.  So I began correcting their assumptions at that point and dropped little tidbits of my own struggles in life - "Well, considering my family and I slept on an air mattress in someone's living room for four months until we got back on our feet...yeah...I actually do know struggling."  "Oh, so I guess having to be on foodstamps while my wife and I got our own Master's degrees doesn't count?"  And, "I'm not on food stamps any longer because I took responsibility for my life and positioned myself to land a decent paying job immediately after grad school."


And then people still jumped to assumptions, "Oh, you have the 'I got mine, screw everyone else' mentality." NOOOOOO...more like, I was able to keep a positive outlook and massive determination to get to another level where I could move into a stage of financial security.  I didn't blame everyone else for my plight.


One thing I learned from those commentary exchanges, is that people are sooooo ingrained with a "blame" mindset that they are BLIND to their own responsibility in matters.


There are more factors to the story of that adjunct professor...and I really hope that she develops a TAKE NO PRISONERS perspective about life and pushes to be mindful and/or create her own opportunities in life.  But having those discussions with complete strangers lets me know that it's easier to just blame someone else for our troubles and wallow in our own self-misery.  Conquerors don't do that.


Conquerors always think of how they can overcome tough situations in life.


Conquerors think of strategies to create plans of attack to push through those walls of life that think they can hold us back.


Not all situations are in our control...but for the one's that are, Conquerors don't blame...we accept situations...and if we don't like the situation...we make changes where we have control.  We don't give up...we try different approaches.


What are facing in your life that you've been blaming others for?  How can you reframe that situation and take your responsibility in it, and begin to seek ways to change it?


Comment below with your perspective on the Blame Game.

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