We know that the blame game is a waste of time and hurts our souls. We self-sabotage whenever we do it and it stops us focusing on our lives (start here if you missed the first two parts of this mini series)
So why do we do it? Two reasons. If something goes wrong, it becomes a question of why it went wrong, and if there’s one thing humans like to do, it’s answer questions.
This was instilled in us from an early age – both at home and at school. We get rewarded for answering questions correctly (in the eyes of the questioner) – which is also how we learned to lie (“who did that?” – “Quentin did Miss”).
(we learned to lie when we got our answers wrong and were punished for it)
The second reason is we love shortcuts, and the shortest answer to any question is to look for the closest cause that comes to mind.
This is what Tolstoy was referring to when he talked about the “Continuity of Motion” in his book War and Peace. History tells us about the Kings and Queens, the Generals and Commanders, The Politicians and Presidents, and the Heroes and Villains. We come to believe that nothing would ever happen in our world if these people didn’t exist.
Yet the reality is it comes from everyone. No politician ever did anything without first knowing it was popular. No King or Queen ever rose to power without a groundswell of opinion from the peasants, and no hero or villain ever became such without being labelled so by others.
Think about this carefully as you put together your positioning as a copywriter. The world judges you, never the other way round no matter how much a hero you want to be.
Tomorrow and in this week’s newsletter, I’ll go into more detail on the blame game and how it is used to change opinion. Hot stuff for villains that every single hero needs to be aware of.