Today, I want to talk about a very common issue and one that I experienced all too often. Are you in the habit of feeling sorry for yourself or thinking that you’re a victim when something upsets you? If so, I’ve learned one important rule in recent times; you cannot move on and be happy with your life if you act like a victim.
In this post, I want to discuss why playing the victim can be detrimental to your health and happiness!
CHARACTERISTICS OF A VICTIM MENTALITY
Victims get easily upset because they’re convinced that they have little or no control of their external world; in fact, they believe this same external world is the cause of their unhappiness. For this reason, they tend to blame other people and certain circumstances for the unhappiness they feel.
When you live like a victim, you don’t have to take RESPONSIBILITY or ACTION. Why? Because you believe as though you have no control and no ability to improve your life.
There are many benefits to playing the victim and, I must say, it can be quite addictive. There's a sense of power and worthiness, it’s easy to get attention - making this habit difficult to shift:
• You’re not responsible for anything • You don’t have to take action • Your uneasiness makes people less likely to disapprove or upset you • Your drama makes people feel sympathy and gets you attention • Your stories make people feel obliged to help • You have a “need” and “right” to complain which will most likely get you anything you want
However, this can be incredibly damaging because the ‘world is against me’ attitude leads to you feeling:
Sad, Unhappy, Grumpy, Angry, Negative, Tense, Threatened, Frightened, Inadequate, Weak, Powerless, Low in self-esteem, Lacking confidence, Frustrated, Unfulfilled, Doubtful, Pessimistic, and Cynical.
HOW TO SPOT A VICTIM MENTALITY?
Above all else, the easiest way to spot a victim mentality is by listening to the language you/they use. For example, it could be described as negative, pessimistic and defeatist. You may hear:
• It’s too difficult • It’s too much hard work • I’m too old to do that • It’s impossible • I will fail • I will fail again • Life’s unfair • Life’s hard • It’s your fault • It can’t be me • I’ll try • Maybe • Let me think about it • I’m not good enough • What’s the point? • It’s easy for you to say • Look at me • I’m not pretty enough • I’m not attractive • When I lose the weight • I don’t earn enough • I’m not confident in that field • I’m not sure • I’m not good enough • I’m not clever enough • I’m not qualified enough • I’m so unlucky • Life’s not on my side • Why me?
I don’t know about you, but just reading this long list of negative words and phrases makes me feel uncomfortable. Did you know that a single negative word can increase the activity in the amygdala (the fear centre of the brain)? This releases dozens of stress-producing hormones and neurotransmitters. These negative words send a message to the brain and impact logic, reasoning, and even language processing.
Every time a negative thought is vocalised, stress chemicals are released in the victim’s brain (as well as in the listener’s brain too!). The listener feels uneasy and irritable, therefore causing discouragement and a lack of trust; this is just one reason why we don’t like to be surrounded by negative people.
For more information on the effects of positive and negative speech, see Words Can Change Your Brain (Newberg & Waldman).
Now, ask yourself this question: Who is really responsible for the REALITY of your life?
• Your parents? • Your spouse? • Your boss? • Your friends? • Your family? • Your children? • The economy? • The government? • The media? • The weather?
Let me answer; the reality of your life is determined by YOU, your THOUGHTS, your FEELINGS, and your ACTIONS. Only YOU have the power and control to change the circumstances of your life.
If you really want to STOP all the inner pains and troubles, you must take 100% responsibility for your life!
Although it can be scary to admit you’re responsible for everything that happens in life, the day you stop blaming others for all your problems and bad luck in life will be the day that everything changes.
“Whether you think you can, or whether you think you can’t, you are probably right.” Henry Ford
If you are still reading this because deep in your heart you are ready to shift a victim mentality, here is a wonderful flower essence that can support you to step out of this toxic mindset:
Willow is for those who feel sorry for themselves and show signs of negative thought patterns. They feel bitter towards life and have a tendency to blame others for their life situation. Because a negative attitude can create a negative reality, this essence turns a negative attitude into a positive one and helps you to take responsibility for your life. Willow will restore optimism in your ability to create the life you want.
The Bach Flower Essences aim to soothe our emotions and thoughts. They help us to regain positivity and control when the stress, worry and pressure of daily life overwhelms us. The Flower Essences are profoundly healing, and the most common feedback from my clients is that they feel so much lighter and more positive after just a few days of using them.
HOW TO TAKE THE REMEDY:
Put 2 drops of Willow Flower Essence in a large glass of water. That’s all there is to it.
I recommend the above at least four times a day.
Melanie is an Image Therapist, Facialist and Feminine Empowerment Coach based in central London. She offers Authentic Image Transformation from the inside out for women ready to elevate their personal and professional life.
Image from Gabriel Matula via Unsplash