The Blame Game

The Blame Game

“Blaming is essentially unleashing our anger, pain, and discomfort onto whatever we can find to make us feel more in control…when, in reality, that’s the opposite of what happens. Instead of gaining control, we are losing the ability to have happy, healthy, and empathetic relationships.”
- Brené Brown, author and research professor

Welcome to The Blame Game!

The game that stars a low-consciousness person in a high-stress environment.

I’m your host, Alan Philips, and we’re here to rage for a moment, discharge our discomfort and pain, and create feelings of long-term guilt. 

Our goal is to slowly tear all of our meaningful relationships to shreds.

Without further ado, let’s start raging!!

(The aggressive, angry crowd goes wild.  The air throbs with negativity.)

To explain how The Blame Game works, we have a special guest, Dr. Brené Brown. Please give Brené your best Blame Game welcome!

Hi, my name is Brené and I am a blamer.  Let me tell you a quick story.

This happened a few years ago, when I had just realized the magnitude to which I blame.  I was in my house, dressed in white slacks and a pink sweater. I’m drinking a cup of coffee in my kitchen.  It’s a full cup.  I drop it on the tile floor by accident and it breaks into a million pieces, splashing coffee up all over my pants and sweater.  Not a second later, I say, out loud in an empty kitchen, “Damn you, Steve!” 

Steve is my husband.  Let me show you how fast this works for me.  Steve plays water polo with a group of friends, and he’d played the night before.  Before he went out, I said, “Hey, make sure you come back at ten because you know I can never fall asleep until you’re home.” 

Well, Steve got back around 10:30, so I went to bed a little bit later than I wished.  That led to me having a second cup of morning coffee and deciding immediately that it was his fault I spilled it all over myself.  Had he come home at the time we discussed, this may have never happened, I decided.  As I’m cleaning up the kitchen, Steve calls. I pick up and say, “Hey,” with a strong attitude, and he responds, “Hey, what’s going on babe?”  I say, “Ugh, what’s going on?  I’ll tell you exactly what is going on.” And I erupt in a diatribe of blame, explaining to him all the reasons he caused this to happen to me, only to realize that he hung up right when I started to blame. Poor Steve—he knows there is no reasoning with the blamer.

Back to you, Alan!

Thanks, Brené!

How many of you are living with that victim consciousness?  It causes chaos in your life, your career, and the lives of your loved ones, because you aren’t strong enough to take responsibility for your own actions, decisions, and mistakes. 

Do you think you’re a victim of circumstance?  Not bloody likely.

To all the blamers out there, here is the truth.

The human experience is filled with highs and lows. And the majority of us are not sufficiently self-aware.  Combine this lack of awareness with strong emotions, and our ability to decipher cause and effect is blurred.  When we experience highs, such as a promotion, we tend to attach them to our ego.  We assume we got there from our talent, intelligence, or some other wonderful characteristic of ours.  And when we experience lows, such as a flat tire or loss of money, we tend to blame others—mainly those closest to us.  These people, our loved ones, become the punching bags for our rage at life’s injustice and the imperfections in our lives.  As The Book of Life explains, “We get angry with the very nicest, most sympathetic, most loyal people in our vicinity, the ones actually least likely to have harmed us, but most likely to stick around while we blame them for having done so.”

To win at The Blame Game, just keep holding on to that negativity.  You will destroy your life, but you will rack up a ton of chaos points.

For those of you looking to win at the bigger game, the one called LIFE, it’s time to start taking responsibility.  When things go well in your life or work, realize that the good fortune is not all your doing—and might even have little to do with you.  It’s a combination of luck, persistence, overcoming your shortcomings, and, critically, the support of the people around you—your team or your loved ones.  The bottom line? Almost nothing is possible alone. 

And when things go badly in your life, be the first to stand up and take responsibility.  You will be amazed by the results of being accountable for your actions, decisions, and faults.  Be accountable, and you’ll see these three central outcomes:

  1. You’ll feel better about yourself.
  2. You’ll have better relationships.
  3. You’ll neutralize the negativity in the situation, allowing for positive solutions to emerge.

To all of you who’ve been tuning into this show for years, goodbye, goodnight, and I hope to never see you again.  And remember, “Blame is just a lazy person’s way of making sense of chaos.”  Now back to your regularly scheduled programming….

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