Divorce Advice on Losing the Victim Mentality
Victim mentality, also known as self-victimization, is a perpetual state of being a victim of forces outside yourself. Things always happen to you, and there’s nothing you can do about it. This way of thinking is the pinnacle of powerlessness; it defeats any chance of living a happy life.

Everyone is a victim at some point. Of your own thoughts and actions, of someone else’s actions, or of circumstance. The victim mentality is identifying as a victim regardless of what the actual cause is.  For example, let’s say your marriage ends. The reason for the dissolution isn’t relevant to you. What matters is that you’re the victim of the breakup. You got the sore end of the deal. There’s nothing you could do to stop it from happening. And if you remarry, it will happen again.

The victim mentality is a destructive force in your life. Being a victim isn’t fun and most people have limited patience for self-victimizers.  So, how can you lose the victim mentality and find happiness?

Recognize the things that make you feel like a victim.

The first step to change is recognition. The victim mentality is triggered by an event or memory. Take inventory of the things that happen to make you feel like a victim. Make a list of past events. What invokes a victim response? What situations do you blame others for, or take no responsibility for? Think of times you’ve used the word “but” in the middle of a sentence. “I’m sorry, but I couldn’t help it.”

Change your thought patterns.

When you recognize the pattern, you can begin the process of change. Start small. Try to avoid thoughts that set expectations. Refrain from using words like, should, ought, fair, right, and wrong. When you think negatively, test yourself by considering the positive counterpoint to that thought. Your boss rags on you in meetings because he doesn’t appreciate you. Could be it that your boss challenges you because he sees the potential you bring to the team?

If you fall into a self-victimizing thought pattern, it’s okay. Let it pass, and start over. You have control over your thoughts, how they pass through your mind, and how you decide to feel about them.

It’s not too late to forgive the people you’ve blamed for events in your life. Apologizing can save or rekindle lost relationships.

Focus on things in your life you have power over. Make a point to feel grateful for those things. When you’re ready, try to feel grateful for more things in your life.

Take control of your life.

One of the benefits of recognizing triggers of victim mentality is avoiding self-sabotage. When something happens that sends you down a path of self-victimizing, you now have a choice. You can give in to the negative thoughts and become powerless, or you can take control. If you decide to take control, you may end up changing the outcome of the original event.

For example, your wife tells you she wants a divorce. You can give up and say, “I knew you would do this anyway.” That response will validate her decision, prompting her to leave. Or, you can choose to take control by saying, “No, I have a say in this decision. Let’s talk about this.” She’s likely to take pause and talk with you, possibly stay to resolve things.

Expressing gratitude helps improve self-esteem and confidence. You’re not powerless. You don’t need the approval of others to feel good about yourself. By changing how you see yourself, you’ll change how others see you.

Do things that make you happy. It’s harder to feel like a victim when you’re doing positive things. Spend time with people who support and encourage your growth.

It’s not an easy journey, but it’s a rewarding one. Losing the victim mentality will transform you into a healthier, happier you. Stop letting life get the best of you. Write your own story. You’re no longer a victim; you’re a survivor.