When Self-Blame Seems Useful

Yes, here we are talking about self-blame again. That’s because it traps so many people, and because getting rid of it creates such freedom, that I’m covering another aspect of it here.

In the last post, Self-Blame Or Personal Responsibility?, the emphasis was on how blaming yourself can creep in on you and keep you stuck.

OK. But sometimes self-blame actually seems useful. Why would you let go of something useful? Doesn’t make sense.

Self-Blame As Motivation

Maybe it feels motivating to scold yourself for what you coulda-shoulda done. Maybe that’s what gets you into action. Your Inner Drill Sergeant makes it perfectly clear how it’s your own darn fault that you’re in the position you’re in. So it’s up to you to get out of it. And that’s how you get yourself moving on your projects or personal changes. So self-blame really IS useful. Or so it seems…

While it’s powerful to realize you’re in charge of your own life, using blame to get there is a poor choice. Here’s the truth: Scolding yourself into action may work in the short term, but it won’t hold up over the long haul. Self-blame as a motivator is not sustainable.

Sooner or later, you’ll tell that part of you to buzz off because you’re sick of being yelled at. So now you have an inner stand-off going on. And that keeps you stuck.

It just doesn’t feel good to be dreading the next scolding. And it’s hard to feel positive while you’re feeling ashamed about what you did or didn’t do.

Letting It Go

If riding yourself is a familiar motivator, it may be a challenge to give it up. But it will be SO worth it! Self-blame is a destructive practice that can really keep you from moving forward.

Being willing to release it comes from trusting yourself to come up with positive alternatives (and your resources and community). From there, it just takes practice:

  • Practice noticing when you blame yourself.
  • Practice letting go of it.
  • Practice motivating yourself in other ways.

And of course, EFT is a great way to help release those old self-blame patterns and the teachings behind them.

How does this work for you? What are some alternative ways you motivate yourself? Share your experience with the rest of us by leaving a comment.

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  • Juan Nasarro

    Hello Janet,
    I just posted a message on Club Fearless kind on this subject. It is silly it’s like chasing the surf at the beach when your a kid. Run down as the water recedes, and as the wave crashes on the beach and rushes back up you turn and run avoiding the wet and salty (depending where you live) cold water. Seems like I have experienced this back and forth activity throughout my life. I get annoyed at myself for this kind of thinking. All I want to do is over come it. Opportunities & relationships that i have squandered due to this. I am going to your above post to watch now. Thank you for the ear. #JUAN

  • Hi Juan,
    I’ll bet a lot of people can identify with your experience — and with feeling annoyed about it. Sounds like you’re really aware of how self-blame is not serving you now, so that’s great. You have a clear picture of what you want to release. How would you like to motivate yourself instead? What are some positive ways to pull yourself forward? And what resources can you use to help release those old habits connected to self-blame? I know you’re on the right path if you’re hooked up with Club Fearless and EFT. And I’m pulling for you!

    All the best,

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