7 Things To Stop Blaming Other People For (They're No Fault But Your Own)

If there's anything that people find pretty universally unappealing, it's the person who insists that, no matter their issue or discomfort, someone else is to blame. It's easy to assume that our experiences are the fault of everything around us. The people on the train are annoying, our relatives are insufferable, work is demanding, the list goes on and on. What this mindset fails to recognize, however, is that we create our experiences, whether we know we're doing it or not.

It goes something like this: we choose what we believe in, and we choose what and how we think. Because we've been so deeply conditioned to other people's thinking for so long, this can seem foreign and impossible, but it's just because we've never known differently. Usually, difficult circumstances are a call to recognize this. What you choose to focus on is what you naturally begin to notice. What you believe, in the great, existential grand scheme of it all, frames everything you do and feel within a context. That is how you create your own emotional experience.

The first step is in realizing that nobody "does" anything to you; it's how you perceive, process and learn from whatever happens to you in life that creates how you feel and what you think. Even when someone has undoubtedly wronged you, blaming them or holding a grudge doesn't bring you any closer to being okay again. It may not be your fault, but if it's affecting you, it is your problem. Here, all the things you should stop blaming other people for, even if you don't feel responsible for them:

Your Inability To Tolerate Truly Intolerable People

It's not anybody's job to cater to your desires, needs and particular likes. It is your job to try to understand why there are certain people and traits and behaviors that drive you mad. Consider this: there are many intolerable behaviors exhibited by people all over the world. Why is it that only some infuriate you? The reality is that there are many very frustrating, ignorant, close-minded people in the world, but we don't inch any closer to making them not that way by blaming them or getting annoyed ourselves. It's just as ignorant to be closed to their closed-mindedness, if that makes sense.

Feeling "Left Out"

This is really common within friend groups, and I theorize that every member in them feels this way now and again. Feeling "left out" is not someone else's doing; it's a projection of your own insecurity. You're only as left out as you either believe yourself to be, or allow yourself to be. (Sometimes worrying about this is a cue to get a new crew.)

"Ruining" A Big Experience For You — Like College, Or Drama Club...

Nobody ruined it for you, you ruined it for yourself by allowing someone else's actions to affect how you perceived your time there. You let your fears or concerns or beliefs surrounding the situation dictate how you'd behave and what you'd value and how you thought about it. Nobody can take anything without you giving it, even if you don't realize you are.

What You Believe About Yourself

The truth is that when we talk about our past experiences, we often think that certain people "made" us think or feel or believe particular things about ourselves. (Our helicopter parents made us defensive and insecure, our abusive relationship made us hyper-sensitive and untrusting, etc.) But the reality is that those people's actions did not create a belief, you created a belief based on their actions. Coming to a place of true acceptance and healing is realizing that what they did was projections of how they felt about themselves, not really about you. Nobody made you believe anything, you chose to.

How Successful You Are(n't)

It's a lot easier to think (hope, believe, assume, latch on desperately...) to the idea that people who are successful are the proprietors of good luck and better timing. (I once had a relative ask if I thought "divine intervention" was responsible for my "success" and honestly, there is nothing as horrendously insulting). The point is that people who have what they want work for it. People who actualize themselves and their potential face their blocks and keep going. It's unfair and inaccurate to even begin to assume that the only "successful" people in the world are the ones who had their hand dealt to them well. Some people have more challenges than others, but regardless, you are responsible for how your life turns out. You decide whether or not you'll overcome said challenges and persevere. Nobody else gives that to you. Your existence is not at the whim of a universe that doles out dreams and wishes. You create it, you choose it. Your life, and your problems, are nothing but a product of you.

Your Broken Heart

This one seems really counterintuitive at first (how could my broken heart be anything but the fault of the person who broke it??!), but I have comforting and revelatory news for you: the relationships you can't get over are the ones you feel you never really had in the first place. The relationships you "never feel you really had" are the ones you had more dreams about than you had a love for their reality. Mourning and grieving the loss of someone is not the same thing as having a "broken heart." The key is in realizing that the dreams you had about your relationship were only ever yours, and they still are. It's just a matter of when, and how, you reclaim them.

How "Good" You Feel About Yourself — Or Not

Most of how we construct our idea of ourselves is comparative. We think we're only as good as we are better than someone else, we're only as happy with ourselves as we assume other people would be happy with our lives too. The reality is that nobody else is creating or influencing how you feel about yourself, it's all in your head. Trying to manipulate how you think you're perceived is a slippery slope and a completely ineffective one regardless. You do not only have to consider yourself as beautiful, or smart, or capable, or successful as society does. Doing so is your choice. It was only ever yours regardless.

Images: The CW; Giphy(6)