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You Are The Victim #FridayReflections

You are the victim, yes, you are! Not of your circumstances necessarily, but of your mind telling you that you are one.

The moment we start to believe that we are victims, we begin to act in a way that can be very self-defeating. One of the most powerful books I’ve read is Viktor Frankl’s ‘Man Search For Meaning’. In this book Frankl, a psychotherapist and a Holocaust survivor talks of his experiences and learning from this experience. Having lost his mother, wife and brother in concentration camps, he was a classic victim. Yet he focused his studies and book on the survivors of the Nazi terror and what he thought helped them to survive. That he felt was the choice they made not to feel victimized.

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” ― Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning

Victim or Bully?

If you’ve ever owned or been around a boxer dog, you’ll know that they’re very good at looking like and playing the victim. So if you walked into our home and saw a sad faced creature like this hanging around his food bowl,  you are bound to think that we are treating our dog badly! In actual fact, he’s the one bullying us. He sits around whinging or whacking us with his paws asking for a particular treat, when he’s just had a whole bowl of food!

People who see themselves as victims are often bullies in disguise. They feel the world and some people in particular owe them. They are constantly blaming others for their feelings. They deal in ‘shoulds’ and ‘musts’ making rules for everyone else’s behaviour, but giving themselves a free pass. They are very inventive when it comes to creating excuses for themselves and so shirk off responsibility.

How to stop playing the victim

There’s no simple way to do this for the person who has got into playing the victim. In fact, they’d have to rewrite the script playing in their head. It takes authenticity and the courage to change – but then, that is true of all personal efforts efforts.

I guess I’ll go with what Anthony De Mello offered in one of his talks:

Put this program into action, a thousand times: (a) identify the negative feelings in you; (b) understand that they are in you, not in the world, not in external reality; (c) do not see them as an essential part of “I”; these things come and go; (d) understand that when you change, everything changes.

You are no longer a victim if:

  • You do not believe the world owes you a living.
  • You know you have to go through thorns to find roses.
  • You refuse to hang around with victims.
  • You know the grass is not always greener on the other side.
  • You refuse to use your past as an excuse.
  • You take setbacks as an opportunity to gain strength.
  • You spend more time thinking about others.
  • You replace excuses with action.

This post is written in response to one of the #FridayReflections prompts. Please note I am not saying that there are no real victims – there are – I work with many innocent ones indirectly. However, I’m talking about the victim mentality that often abounds both on social media and in real life.

As long as you feel like a victim, you are one. – Morgan Freeman

 

 

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Friday Reflections is a link up hosted by Shalini at KohlEyed Me and me, Corinne at Everyday Gyaan. We invite you to join us every Friday to share a good cup of tea and your reflections based on the prompts we provide.

Here’s how #FridayReflections works:

  1. Write a post using one of the prompts for the week provided below.
  2. Use the hashtag #FridayReflections. Please follow us on Twitter @FridayReflect and join our Facebook Group.
  3. Add your link to the linky below.
  4. Use our #FridayReflections badge to encourage other bloggers to join in too.
  5. Visit and comment on the posts of other bloggers linked here.

Prompts for 5th January 2018 – choose any one:

  1. Write about an interesting conversation you overheard recently.

  2. “As long as you feel like a victim, you are one.” – Morgan Freeman

  3. Picture prompt – credit (Corinne Rodrigues)

Image Credits: Shutterstock

24 Comments

  1. […] Friday Reflections is a link up hosted by Shalini at KohlEyed Me ( presently on a break) and me, Corinne at Everyday Gyaan. We invite you to join us every Friday to share a good cup of tea and your reflections based on the prompts we provide. S […]

  2. […] Friday Reflections is a link up hosted by Shalini at KohlEyed Me and me, Corinne at Everyday Gyaan. We invite you to join us every Friday to share a good cup of tea and your reflections based on the prompts we provide. […]

  3. […] Friday Reflections is a link up hosted by Shalini at KohlEyed Me and me, Corinne at Everyday Gyaan. We invite you to join us every Friday to share a good cup of tea and your reflections based on the prompts we provide. […]

  4. […] Friday Reflections is a link up hosted by Shalini at KohlEyed Me and me, Corinne at Everyday Gyaan. We invite you to join us every Friday to share a good cup of tea and your reflections based on the prompts we provide. […]

  5. […] Friday Reflections is a link up hosted by Shalini at KohlEyed Me and me, Corinne at Everyday Gyaan. We invite you to join us every Friday to share a good cup of tea and your reflections based on the prompts we provide. […]

  6. datmama4 datmama4 January 9, 2018

    Narcissists are often expert at playing the victim. No matter what, it’s all about them and how everyone else is making their lives harder.

    Really, we choose how to respond to what life has to offer. Good, bad, or ugly, it’s our response that tailors what comes next. Great post!

  7. Sunita Saldhana Sunita Saldhana January 8, 2018

    A very interesting take on being the victim. Needs some pondering !

  8. Lux G. Lux G. January 7, 2018

    OMG, this is so true. We become what our minds tell us.

  9. BellyBytes BellyBytes January 7, 2018

    Oh my little Po has that poor me puppy dog look and as his eyes get bigger and more wistful, your heartstrings are ready to be pulled right out of your body! There are real victims but you are right about more people feeling victimised and portraying themselves as victims.

  10. By playing victim, one tries to find a safe heaven of sympathy. And its nothing but a virtual reality and thus offers no solution. One needs a brave front to fight with negative self and emerge victorious. Agree Anthony De Mello when he says ‘understand that when you change, everything changes.’

  11. Sulekha Sulekha January 6, 2018

    Corinne, they say it is all in the mind. When we believe we are the victims or when we blame others for treating us badly, we reflect our thoughts. Love this quote –
    “As long as you feel like a victim, you are one.” – Morgan Freeman

    And about our furry friends, they melt our hearts with their sad faces and adorable tricks. I miss my Sparky, she sends me a woof now and then to let me know she is well and waiting for me at the rainbow bridge.
    I have joined the Write Tribe group today, wonder why it took me so long to do so 🙂 Am writing my first Friday Reflections post and hope to put it up today.

  12. Roshan Radhakrishnan Roshan Radhakrishnan January 5, 2018

    We seem to have the same issue with the beagle at home. The look on his face would convince a judge that he’s not been fed for the last ten months!

    And as to the solution, I like the points made by Antony De Mello… Tough to implement but i guess realization is the first and key step of the journey.

  13. Balaka Balaka January 5, 2018

    It is true that who play victims are often the most toxic people.

  14. Shirley Corder Shirley Corder January 5, 2018

    Thanks for this thought-provoking post, Corinne. I’d love to do your linkup but I need to go slow as I have my own plus another two I’m already committed to. I’ll certainly watch to see how yours goes. Have a blessed year! Thankful_Thursday Linkup

  15. Shilpa Garg Shilpa Garg January 5, 2018

    Agree completely. So often, we play the victim game, sometimes unconsciously and sometimes consciously!. Thoughts like, ‘it’s not fair or this shouldn’t be happening to me’, creep in our life. And this truly makes us feel helpless and discourage us to take any positive or constructive action. Was not aware of this attitude of Boxers. 🙂
    Thanks for a thoughtful and thought provoking post, Corinne.

  16. Anne Louise Bannon Anne Louise Bannon January 5, 2018

    Yeah. Sounds like something I need to work on. It’s kind of my mantra for the year – letting go. Mostly all the junk around the house, but also all the negative, hurtful attitudes. This is not going to be easy, but must be done.

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