By Prof. David Clutterbuck
Coaching and mentoring conversations frequently run into the brick wall of blame, most often in one of two common forms: self-blame (assuming responsibility for one’s own or other people’s misfortunes) or other-blame (protecting one’s own self-image and reputation by blaming others).
Both forms block the client’s ability to be authentic and to make progress.
Blame arises from an instinctive need to attribute causation to a negative event – with the underlying assumption that assigning culpability will reduce our anxiety. Frequently, this means shifting causation from ourselves to another identifiable source.
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