How To...Deal w/a "Victim"
So we all know at least ONE person who’s always quick to victimize themselves with the hopes of gaining sympathy from those around you. I could talk to those people, but honestly I want to talk to the rest of us who are mature enough to accept responsibility for our actions. Everything about #NicolesNetwork is centered around growth, development, and self-improvement and unfortunately people in that category just aren’t my audience. However, I do recognize that those of working towards a better version of ourselves sometimes has to deal with the “victim” on a regular basis.
Today we’re going to talk about how we can deal with the victims in our lives and navigate through their foolishness without risking our peace. We cannot control others, but we can control and minimize the impact their behaviors have on our lives. With that being said…let’s get right to it!
1. Understand why they’re that way
A lot of times when you’re dealing with someone who feels victimized all of the time there is a deeper issue working inside of them, and if we’re able to understand that we can coexist with them better. A common cause of playing the victim is because they’re missing something from their lives whether that be validation, sympathy/support, and commonly their insecurities are screaming louder than they can even process. The reason they’re playing the victim card is because those around them will feel compelled to provide the sympathy or attention they’re craving.
If you find yourself always in the middle of a problem or always being the one hurt in every situation, it may be time to have an honest conversation with yourself. As adults we have to take responsibility for the roles we play in the things that happen to us, even if it wasn’t your fault completely. Whenever I’m hurt by a situation I immediately take responsibility for my part and that’s all I focus on because I recognize that I cannot change someone else. I am responsible for myself, and you are responsible for yourself.
There are going to be things in this world that will hurt you, try to learn the lesson so you can move forward. Even when I’ve dated someone who was a dog, instead of focusing on what he may or may not have done I choose to focus on my actions and try to find a way to prevent that from happening again. There is always something I could’ve done to prevent the situation, even if it was having better judgment about the guys I’m entertaining. What are you contributing to the problems you’re facing?
2. Adjust your expectations
Once you’ve come to the realization that this person plays the victim, you can begin to adjust your expectations. If you know someone is prone to pulling the victim card, it should surprise you less and less when they do just that, if it quacks like a duck...! When you’ve adjusted your expectation you already know how certain scenarios are likely to go down and they can pleasantly surprise if they’d like but they probably wont. Until they make a decision to change for the better, you can expect them to be exactly who they’ve shown you they are. In the words of the eternal poet Maya Angelou “When someone shows you who they are believe them; the first time”.
A lot of times we end up frustrated because we’re dealing with unmet expectations, when we should’ve adjusted our expectations to begin with. With each unmet expectations we need to make adjustments to what we are willing to expect from that person, until they prove they’re capable of changing. If you expect nothing from a person, it will not frustrate you when they give you nothing.
3. Honesty is the best policy
There will come a time when this person is going to need the truth, the whole truth, nothing but the truth…so help them God! In those moments you will have to provide honest and constructive feedback in a calm and non-emotional manner. The primary reason this person has survived their entire life playing the victim is because those around her have allowed them to do so. No one in their close circle has been honest enough with them to provide them with the honest truth about the areas they need to grow.
Be mindful this person may not be ready for the whole truth all at once, remember this is the first time they’re receiving an unfiltered truth. They will naturally get defensive because if the whole world defended you and all of a sudden you’re learning you’re not perfect…you’d be defensive too. But someone somewhere needs to rip the bandaid and begin the process of being honest with the person in question.
4. Protect your peace
Your peace is your priority and responsibility. You have to begin making conscious decisions about who and what are allowed into your space mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. You deserve for your peace to be protected…but that is your job! I have reached my personal rock bottom and literally had to FIGHT to find peace again, when you’ve had to work that hard to have peace you learn to protect it! I am very conscious about who I allow to interrupt my peace, the list is very small if it exists at all.
One of the most critical ways I protect my peace is by minding my business and ensuring I am not taking on the stress or drama in the lives of those around me. I do not take on the stress of others simply because I am aware of their problems, but I have my own problems to resolve. The 2 most challenging areas when it comes to minding my business is around family and work. It’s very easy to get caught up in work drama that has nothing to do with me, and because I love my family it is easy to be too engaged in the drama of others. This concept of minding your business and only concerning yourself with things that concern you will help you deal with a “victim” because they will not take up too much mental space.
5. Minimize your interactions
When you’re constantly surrounded by Negative Nancys…it makes it extremely difficult to remain positive. Sometimes you have to keep a safe distance from them because energy is transferrable. Have you ever seen someone who lights up the whole room with their positive energy and as soon as they smile you can’t help but smile? The opposite is true as well! When I notice that someone has a habit of being the “victim” in every situation, I will intentionally spend as little time as possible surrounded by them. In order to protect my peace, sometimes I have set conscious boundaries to ensure they are not consistently draining my energy. I deserve to live in my peace, and I accept it as my duty!