As an adult, have you ever felt completely wronged by someone? Have you ever felt like something was 100% someone else’s fault? I’m not talking about getting rear-ended in traffic, I’m talking about the profound issues like violation of your personal space.

When you experience a loss of control, it is often accompanied by a deep sense of victimization. Loss of control equals a loss of power that can transform you into a victim. Inhabiting the role of victim softens the blow of the trespass and can help you deal with it. The equation is simple. It’s timeless.

The million dollar question is: Can you see what you sacrifice in order to become a victim? The lure of victim-hood is strong. It’s a thick salve that provides instant relief. Like a newly opened blossom it’s fragrance heady and compels us to inhale it’s essence deeper and deeper until we are drunk. Yes! I was wronged. I was completely innocent. I was just standing there doing nothing, when it happened. Like a sapling swept away in the raging torrent of flood waters, I was completely powerless to stop it. The person that wronged me is evil! How could they do that to me? It’s all their fault!

When something bad happens, it’s comforting to point the finger. This is a natural way to prevent blaming ourselves, which is really important when you have survived an ordeal of any kind. It’s crucial to not blame yourself. The idea that any person “asked for it” is insane. That’s not up for discussion.

What is on the table is weighing the short-term benefit of blaming someone else completely versus the long-term effect of that strategy. The problem is, when you give someone else 100% of the blame, you give them 100% of your personal power. Being a victim means not having the power to change what happened. A very risky prospect and a seriously dangerous habit that can turn into an addiction as destructive as crack.

You do not have to blame yourself in order to see your role in the situation. What I’m suggesting is quite possibly one of the hardest things you’ll ever do. When something traumatic happens to you as an adult, the first order of business needs to be empowering yourself immediately. Look for ways you could have changed the outcome or prevented the scenario in the first place. It’s not to second guess yourself, more to see where you have the power to do things differently in the future. This is not blame. This is accountability and it is the heart of empowerment. Empowerment is the heart of healing.

The more you develop this empowerment muscle, the more natural it will feel to look for your signature on everything that has happened to you. It will eventually come as a relief to ferret out your role in the play of your life because it means you can change it. Discover your part in the equation and commit to it. Own it. It’s 100% yours. Believe it or not, the one thing you want to give away is the one thing that will allow you to never suffer though the same scenario ever again. Give yourself the power to have participated in some way in your trauma so you will have the power to make a different choice next time. It’s difficult, but it will put you in the drivers seat on the express lane to healing.

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