Sometimes life is unfair. Sometimes people are mean. Sometimes we don’t get what we want or think we deserve. Sometimes we get tired. Sometimes we get stuck. Sometimes we get hurt. And often when those things happen, we get an invisible ‘free’ pass to feeling like a Victim.
And it’s ok if we visit for a while.
And sometimes like a short weekend break, it recharges us to move forward because being a Victim has some fantastic benefits.
But it has some significant costs too and they seem to be compound costs the longer we stay there.
Victim removes our real agency and accountability for our own lives and how we behave towards others. It fools us into believing that we have no choice. Or not one that we can make or deliver on. Victim lies to us. And that is why it is a life slug. And worse than that, the more we think of ourself as a Victim, the more we treat ourselves as one and teach others to treat us the same way. The passive-aggressive man who avoids conflict but resents feeling controlled by others who don’t. The adult working woman who feels like a child waiting to be ‘rescued’ but resents being seen as needy or weak. The conscientious worker or parent who always rolls their sleeves up to do the unglamorous jobs but gets tired and angry of waiting to be recognised or rewarded for it.
You can learn a little more about the role of Victim here along with the friends it likes to keep…
But more importantly, I’d like to ask you to envisage a see-saw…Victim on one side and Independent Agency on the other. Where are you right now? How well is that working for you? And if not, what are the benefits of Victim you need to reduce and/or the benefits of Independence you need to increase in order to tilt the see-saw? And if you want to, what is a small first step?