And What You Can Do About It
Doesn’t anyone take responsibility anymore? You may well ask this as you look around at our world today. From politicians to athletes to artistes and influencers — it is not my fault, seems to be the name of the game. Indeed, the blame game is going strong. This leads to the question, “If not you, who?”
When you are unwilling to take responsibility, you signal this to others, albeit unwittingly. Here are a few of the signals that show you are engaging in the blame game:
- You deflect from the matter at hand and answer the questions that no one asked.
- You point the finger at everyone else who has been involved as being responsible for the situation.
- At the same time, you fail to highlight the positive impact of their contribution(s).
- You become creative with the facts in the telling of events.
This is stressful for the people whom you throw under the bus. They end up having to shoulder the responsibility for failure even though you are wholly or at least partially responsible. It is also stressful for the people who want to hold you accountable and have to deal with your greasy pole behavior. But, guess what? The blame game is also stressful for you. Here are three reasons why it will leave you stressed-out.
#1 You are Driven by Fear and Insecurity
Why would you play the blame game? Most likely because you are insecure and fearful. You feel that you are not good enough. Subconsciously, you are always afraid of being found to be less than is expected of you. You are even afraid of being replaced when they find out that you are a “fraud.” Regardless of your many achievements, you still carry fear and insecurity with you. Moreover, you are afraid of losing face.
Harboring fear and insecurity is a sure recipe for stressful living. You never relax. You sabotage your own peace by worrying about people finding you to be inadequate. It is a set up for living in an illusory state.
#2 The Blame Game Needs a Facade of Illusion that Is Hard to Maintain
When you play the blame game, there is a high probability that the face you present to the world is not the real you. Instead, it is the image you have carefully cultivated over time.
Now, don’t get me wrong. Everyone has a public persona as well as a private one. However, when there is a complete disconnect between the two, you have a facade of illusion that is built on the fear and insecurity we mentioned earlier. This facade is very fragile. It is as if a puff of wind would blow it down. You see accepting blame when things do not go right is what you perceive to be the puff of wind that would blow it down.
A facade of illusion is stressful to maintain. It is challenging to keep nothing going. It is like the chamberlains holding up the emperor’s imaginary new clothes. This is totally inauthentic.
#3 You Are Coming From an Inauthentic Place When You Play the Blame Game
It stands to reason then, that when you play the blame game you are coming from an inauthentic place. The real you is tucked away. Play it long enough and you will lose sight of who you truly are. To be dishonest with others and yourself leaves you ever reaching for the unattainable — a person who has no flaws. Congratulations! In playing the blame game, you have played yourself. However, there is hope.
How to Keep From Playing the Blame Game
- Be less concerned about how you appear to others and more about cultivating a spirit of excellence that is grace-filled. God’s grace is ever extended to you. Receive and give it.
- When you do make mistakes, acknowledge them. This is so especially when you are a leader.
- The buck must stop with you. At the same time, show how you will make things right and/or do things differently.
- Remember, you will not always be perfect. It is okay to mess up sometimes. Just don’t make a habit of doing so.
In an era of plastic smiles of inauthenticity, it is important to be true to yourself. When you are wrong, acknowledge it. Avoid the blame game.