ShamanTalk Episode 97

ReFocus Week: Escaping the Blame Game

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When painful or difficult things happen in life, how do you react? Do you immediately want to know whose fault it is? Blaming is the habit of making other people or things ‘wrong’ or responsible when difficult things happen.
 
According to research professor, author and speaker Brené Brown, we mostly blame when we are in pain or anger. “Here’s what we know from the research,” she says, “Blame is simply the discharging of discomfort and pain. It has an inverse relationship with accountability. Blaming is a way that we discharge anger.”
 
The problem with blaming is twofold. Firstly, when we’re stuck in blaming and finger-pointing, we get defensive, and we miss the opportunity to look honestly and gently at ourselves, see what role we played in events and how we might be able to learn and grow from it. We create wrong-doers and right-doers in our minds and may even feel justified to punish and attack others.
 
“All violence is the result of people tricking themselves into believing that their pain derives from other people and that consequently, those people deserve to be punished.”― Marshall B. Rosenberg.
 
Secondly, we also miss out on the possibility of having an honest, open and empathetic conversation to hold people accountable for their actions and ask for change. Holding people accountable takes a lot more grit, courage and self-awareness than raging, attacking and fault-finding.
 
The takeaway: The moment you place Blame, you undermine your resolve to create change—both within and without. In the words of Andy Stanley, “People who blame things rarely change things. Blame is an unassailable change-avoidance strategy.”   
 
In this short animation, Brené shares a funny, personal story about being a ‘blamer’ and goes on to share some key insights from her research into this unhelpful behaviour.
 

Activities & Journeys

Activities and Journeys
 
Take some time and write down some of the times that you found yourself blaming others – even if it felt righteous and justified. 
 
Take this writing on a Journey and ask to be shown a different perspective on this situation/person/event.
 
Ask that what you are offered will help you shift out of the Blame space and into accountability.
 
It may be that you take one situation at a time, or the Guides may show you more than one in a Journey.
 
Either one or more than one Journey is absolutely fine for this work.

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