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Michelle Gottlieb Psy.D., MFT, LPCC
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Resolving issues from your past that block your future

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A Way To Clean Up The Mess

October 2002


When something goes wrong in our lives, we like to blame others. This is a perfectly normal feeling. It is so much easier to say that reason I didn’t get the promotion is because my boss is a jerk, the reason that my children misbehave is because they choose to eat badly, the reason my marriage is in bad shape is because my spouse is not trying. It is easier to be a victim.


Of course, reality is not quite as we state it. Probably we contributed to the messes that we are in the middle of. We didn’t get the promotion because we did not work as hard as the person in the cubicle next door to us did. Our children are out of control because we need to work on our parenting skills. And perhaps, we, too, have gotten lazy about working on our marriage. It is scary to take responsibility.


About 50% of our lives we have no control of. About 50% we do. If are attributing more than 50% to other people, it is time to reassess. If we look at what we are contributing to the problems in our lives, it means that we need to take responsibility and make changes. This is hard stuff. We do not want to make changes. We do not want to be responsible.


Of course, if we take responsibility, then we have the potential of making changes so that we are no longer living in a mess. Hmmm, if we take responsibility and make changes, we might actually create a happy, healthy life for ourselves. Now, there is something to ponder.


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