This idea that we are somehow innocent in our own lives conjures up the need for someone or something to be at fault. For many years, I have used the communication triangle to help make sense of people and situations that are stuck on finding blame and refusing to take responsibility for their own lives. Three hallmark roles form the triangle, which are: victim, persecutor, and rescuer. All the roles wish to avoid responsibility for their own actions in one way or another, and all claim to be innocent.
The victim is the one we are most likely familiar with in both our personal and work lives. This role completely fails to see how their active or passive choices lead to the situations that arise which involve them. They clearly seek to blame the persecutor, who also fails to acknowledge their active role in the current dynamics. This role finds purpose in being the voice of reason and knows how things ought to be done. The rescuer often finds meaning in opposing the persecutor and enabling the victim. I have witnessed this unhealthy cycle of responsibility avoidance play out in my work and personal life. In most circumstances we encounter, the concept of innocence is over rated and often leads to this cycle of manipulation.
What does it mean to you when there are innocent people affected by your choice of actions? How do you resolve the questions of innocence in personal and professional pursuits differently?
Are you involved in any unhealthy relationships currently? Remember the triangle we spoke of earlier that involved three cyclical roles that require the others to persist. The victim, persecutor and rescuer all need one another to maintain their position. Pulling out of this cycle is usually the best strategy to increase your health. What roles do you play, and can you pull yourself out of any of these types of relationships? My hope is you can. I’ve found it to be essential to decreasing my level of stress and chaos. Choose one triangular relationship to pull out of today and be on the guard for this type of relationship in the future. Do not allow yourself to be pulled into these circumstances at home or work.
This blog is part of a series from the book Discover Your Best Life by Mike Hintz. His personal, professional, and spiritual growth tools are also featured in Northlink Retreats. If this topic resonates with you consider reading the book or attending one of the upcoming retreats.