5 Surprising Ways Playing a Victim Will Affect Your Life

Why You Should Address Your Unhealthy Patterns If You Want Less Stress and More Inner Peace

Neel Raman
8 min readApr 18, 2023

To stop playing a victim will require you to change your mindset about how you view your life and what you experience.

Everyone plays the role of a victim sometimes in life. A key thing to remember is it is a role someone chooses to play.

Having a victim mentality will affect every aspect of your life. Not only will it have a negative impact on your life, it will also affect your mental health, your emotional well-being, and your self-confidence.

Find out the surprising ways playing the victim will affect your life, why these effects happen, and how you can overcome them.

1-Minute Summary Video

What Does Playing a Victim Mean?

Playing a victim is a role you take on. When you play a victim, it means you:

  • Do not take responsibility for anything that happens to you or around you.
  • Believe you do not deserve good things to happen to you.
  • Do not take action to change your reality.
  • Generate negative self-talk, which creates more negative experiences.
  • Blame others for your problems.
  • Feel powerless and don’t have a sense of control over events in your life.
  • Let situations or circumstances affect your mental and emotional states.
  • Feel resigned or accept what life gives you.

Playing a victim makes you feel weak and interior and believe you cannot control or affect the outcomes in your life.

Playing a victim doesn’t just affect your life. It also affects everyone around you. Victims often attract negative energy and negativity. They’re like magnets attracting other people’s bad vibes.

playing a victim

Examples of Playing a Victim in Life

Playing a victim from time to time is one of the most common ways people cope with the wide range of challenges in life. They blame others for their problems and often feel better when they play the role of victim.

Playing a victim doesn’t solve any problems. Instead, it makes them worse.

Here are some examples.

  1. Not willing to take responsibility for yourself. This leads to feelings of helplessness and hopelessness.
  2. Not taking action to change things. Instead of trying to fix something, it’s easier just to complain about it.
  3. Blaming others for your problems. Since you may be conditioned to believe people have bad intentions, you assume they want to take advantage of you.
  4. Feeling sorry for yourself. Since you’ve learned to think negatively, you feel guilty for everything that happens to you, which can become a mental health condition if not addressed.
  5. Complaining about your situation. Complaining won’t help you move forward.
  6. Making excuses for your behaviour. Since you’ve become accustomed to rationalising your actions, you convince yourself there’s nothing wrong with what you did.
  7. Thinking no matter what you do, you’ll never succeed. Since you’ve come to expect failure, you give up before you try.
  8. Believing you deserve punishment. Since you’ve convinced yourself you’re undeserving of happiness, you feel unworthy of joy.
  9. Giving up hope. Since you’ve given up on yourself, you lose faith in humanity.
  10. Accepting defeat. Since you’ve accepted you’re powerless over your circumstances, you stop fighting against adversity.

Playing a victim is one of the most common ways we humans cope with traumatic experiences in life. Depending on our personality trait, we learn early on that playing the victim makes us feel better than being strong and independent.

The problem is playing the victim doesn’t help us solve our problems. Instead, it keeps them alive.

Why Do People Play a Victim Role?

People who play a victim role usually do so because they want to avoid taking responsibility for their actions. They don’t want to face up to their own mistakes, failures, or shortcomings.

They may be afraid of being judged by others if they admit to making mistakes. So instead, they blame others for their problems.

Victims often think they’re entitled to certain things in life. That victim mentality causes them to expect others to give them everything they need without having to work hard for it.

Victims often lack confidence in themselves and their abilities. They don’t see themselves as capable of achieving their goals.

Victims often experience difficult feelings, such as guilt, when they fail at something. They feel they’ve let down those around them.

Victims often don’t know how to deal with stress. They experience many intense feelings when they experience stressful situations, which if not dealt with, can lead to mental health issues.

When you play a victim role or have a victim complex, you’re not living fully. You’re missing out on experiencing all the good things life has to offer.

5 Ways Playing a Victim Will Affect Your Life

Here are five surprising ways playing a victim will affect your life, which means you should address these unhealthy patterns if you want less stress and more inner peace.

1. You may experience low vibration emotions

If you’re constantly thinking about your problems, chances are you’re going to feel sad and unhappy.

You might even feel depressed. When you focus on your problems, you’re not giving energy to potential solutions or positive events in your life.

This can lead to feelings of hopelessness and despair. If you keep this up long enough, you could significantly decrease your self-confidence.

2. You may have more self-doubt

Self-doubt is the belief you’re not worthy of success. It causes you to question whether you can achieve anything worthwhile.

It’s a form of low self-esteem. If you spend too much time doubting yourself, you won’t take any risks.

3. You can become insecure and anxious

Insecurity is a fear of failure. It’s the fear of not being able to handle whatever comes next.

If you’re insecure, you’ll feel inadequate and inferior. You’ll my hide your weaknesses from other people because you fear being judged or criticised.

Anxiety is an unpleasant state of tension and worry. If you’re always worried about your future, you’re likely to feel anxious.

Your thoughts about your problems will cause you to obsessively worry about them. This anxiety can lead to physical symptoms, such as stomach aches, headaches, and insomnia.

4. You may lose interest in activities that once gave you pleasure

If you’re constantly thinking negatively, you’ll find it difficult to enjoy anything. You may avoid social situations because you’re afraid of meeting new people.

You may also lose interest in hobbies and pastimes that used to bring you joy. This sense of victimhood will make you feel worse about yourself.

5. You may suffer from poor health

If you’re constantly worrying about your problems, you’re putting yourself under a lot of pressure.

This constant stress can cause you to develop high blood pressure, heart disease, ulcers, and depression. It can also make you irritable. That will make it harder for you to connect with others.

Things You Can Do to Stop Playing a Victim in Life

There are many ways to stop playing a victim in life.

1. Change your perspective

Instead of focusing on your problems, focus on the positive aspects of your life.

Think about all the things you enjoy doing. Think about all the things you’re grateful for.

Focus on the positive things in your life instead of dwelling on your problems.

2. Learn to manage your stress

Learn to control your emotions. Stress affects everyone differently. Some people become aggressive when they’re under pressure. Others become passive.

Some people become nervous and anxious. Others become calm and relaxed.

The best way to cope with stress is to learn how to manage it.

3. Find support

Having supportive relationships helps you stay healthy. In some cases, getting support from health professionals, such as a family therapist, will make a difference.

Having service providers or a supportive network who care about you will make you feel safe and secure.

4. Take action

Taking action is one of the most important things you can do to improve your situation.

Take small steps towards achieving your goals. Don’t wait until everything is perfect before taking action.

Take baby steps towards your goal.

5. Be patient

Patience is the ability to accept what happens without getting upset. Patience allows you to deal with difficult situations calmly.

When you practice patience, you’ll be less stressed and more productive.

6. Accept responsibility

Accepting responsibility means acknowledging you’re in charge of your actions.

If you blame others for your problems, you’ll allow others to dictate what you can or cannot have.

7. Practice forgiveness

Forgiveness is the act of forgiving another person for their mistakes.

Forgiving someone doesn’t mean condoning their behaviour. Forgiving someone does not mean forgetting about what happened.

Final Thoughts

Playing a victim is never an effective way to deal with problems. It’s always better to look at what happened and learn from it rather than wallow in self-pity.

When you play the victim, you’re giving others permission to treat you badly. While playing the victim might feel good for a short period of time, it won’t lead anywhere positive.

Instead of playing the victim, why not create the outcomes you want? When you feel you need to play the victim, think twice before you act.

Action Step: Reflect on the last time you played a victim. Identify what caused you to play a victim. Then write three things you can do next time to stop yourself from playing a victim.

Question: What are other ways playing a victim will affect your life?

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Neel Raman

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