• Doc David

Student vs. Victim

People we run into often make choices that keep them stuck. Some make choices that move them forward. Over and over it seems inevitable, the stuck people stay stuck and the forward movers keep going forward.

I and most people have had our own share of negative experiences in life as well as positive, most people have. What I see many people do is focus on the positive RATHER than the negative. This focus on the positive has been what I’ve seen move people forward in a manner that most people strongly embrace. When people focus on the negative it usually doesn’t propel them forward…it keeps them stuck.

There are two views I often bring up when I work with clients. I ask the question “are you a STUDENT or VICTIM of your circumstances”.


Think often about the injustice they experienced

Blame others for the consequence of the choices they made

Feel sorry for themselves

Believe they are unique and no one else could understand

Tend to be a bit more negative in their world view

Often don’t listen to others

Continue to repeat the mistakes of the past


Learn from their choices

Listen to others for new options to old problems

Tend to be very intentional about choices they make

Study what led them to a place so they don’t go there again

Sees things from a positive perspective

I obviously believe that being a student of life is better than being a victim. If you read through this and find that you may be more of a victim than student here are a few ways to change that trend.

  1. Gratefulness

You and I have so many things to be grateful for that we take for granted. I don’t want to be silly, but having been overseas several times I am thankful for many simple things...running water…large grocery stores...ease of communication and services. If you find yourself stuck as a victim, taking time out in your day to intentionally go through things that are good in your life is important. Look around you right now. I think you could find 5 things you can be grateful for.

  1. Forgiveness

There may be a situation or people in your life that you believe have wronged you, maybe they did. Yet, chances are they have moved on with their lives while you have stayed stuck with your bitterness, hurt or disappointment. It’s time to move on and forgive them, EVEN IF, you think they don’t deserve it.

  1. Change your focus

Victims tend to focus on themselves and their own problems. Seeing the problems of people outside of yourself and helping them is a great way to change your perspective. Recognizing also that there are others who have it way worse than you. When you are not the center of your attention it gets easier to be less of a victim

  1. Don’t run

This may seem counterintuitive. Victims want to protect themselves and not have to experience negative things. I am suggesting that these so called “negative things” are all learning opportunities waiting to happen. If you simply don’t learn and run then you will continue to have a pattern in your life of focusing on negative things. Face the negative things with the help of friends and then change how you respond to them.

Where ever you go, unless you deal with being a victim, you will continue to focus on the negative things. This will continue to make you stuck in your life and you will continue to be unhappy. Create a new story by acknowledging the positive things in your life and forgiving those that you believe have hurt you along way.

#boundaries #relationship #victim #student #family #mentalhealth