Flipping the Switch from Drama to Empowerment

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Last week, we dove into a detailed explanation of the different roles that facilitate drama and the roles that diffuse it. For this post, we’re looking to have a little fun exploring how to use that information to stage a full on drama-busting role reversal.

Moving from Victim to Creator-

There’s a scene in The Matrix, after the Oracle gives Neo bad news that he is not “The One.” The Oracle says something like, “you’re in charge of your own life, remember?”The same is true for us all. We can’t get lost in what other people think: we choose our attitudes, we choose our perspectives, we create our outcomes. When we see that there is the potential that we are playing the victim role, let’s break that cycle by asking questions like: “What do I want to create?” “How do I want to respond?” Better yet, let’s ask these questions every day and in order to prevent drama before it starts. That’s when we become drama-busting gurus.

Switching from Persecutor to Challenger-

Remember, being the persecutor starts with our beliefs, which means that we can overcome it by adjusting our thinking. First, we must acknowledge that the other person is NOT a victim: they are creative, capable, and resourceful. Once we are in this mindset we can change our role by changing our actions. For example:

  • Be courageous and tell the truth about what you see sans assumptions and judgments.

  • Encourage the person to take action and ask if they are willing. If not, say, “OK, what are you willing to do do?”

  • Share the ways in which you’re hoping they will grow or what you’re wanting them to learn and ask for their input.

Jumping from Rescuer to Coach-

Moving from rescuer to coach is similar to the old “Give someone a fish versus teaching them to fish” analogy (and we all know how it goes, so I won’t bore you here). We can’t fix the victim’s every problem for them. Instead, we can take the role of a guide. Instead of stepping in and resolving the problem with a quick wave of the wand, we can aim to guide them through it by asking questions such as, “What do you want?” “What are your choices?” “What outcomes are important to you?” If we continue to play the role of rescuer it’s the other person we are robbing in the end (and we don’t want to be the kind of people who rob others).

With the information now in front of us, let’s intend to make the switch from drama to empowerment. Being a drama buster means not only understanding how to prevent drama, but also recognizing when we are engaging in drama and consciously flipping the switch. Freeing ourselves from the negativity that soap-opera-like drama can bring into our personal and professional lives opens us up to the opportunity for greater success.

Our upcoming Ditch the Drama™ workshop will dive deeper into the subject in greater detail and we look forward to seeing you there!


Counteracting Drama with 3 Simple Roles

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I am very excited about continuing our conversation about drama this week. If you missed my last post, “An Introduction to Drama: The 5 Questions to Defining It,” we are discussing drama to help round out our Ditch the Drama™ workshop, which will next be held at the end of July. In this post we get to answer two very important questions:

  1. What are the roles that breathe life into drama?

  2. What are the roles that bust drama?

I have never been one to “hold for effect,” so let’s dig right in.

1. What are the roles that breathe life into drama?

  • Victim – a person who perceives that someone, or some circumstance, is doing something to them, thus becoming powerless, helpless, or not in control. When a person surrenders to this belief (consciously or unconsciously), they become a victim.

  • Persecutor – a person, condition or situation that is doing something to the victim. The persecutor believes that they are justified and most importantly that they are right. For example, a person could believe that the victim is wrong, incompetent, or powerless and is behaving accordingly.

  • Rescuer – a person, thing or activity that serves to save the day by making the persecutor go away or by numbing the pain associated with being persecuted. For example, a person could be a rescuer if they stand up for the victim. It can also be a substance such as alcohol or drugs, or an activity like kickboxing or fighting.

2. What are the roles that bust drama?

While the roles that create drama seem extreme, and we may consider ourselves innocent of them, the truth is that drama is not just for Drama Queens, we are all participating in it on some level everyday. The trick is being able to recognize the subtle hints that we have fallen into a role and take the necessary steps to shift into one of the following roles:

  • Creator – a person who, instead of playing the role of victim, asks questions like: what do I want, what are my choices? They choose and create their own outcomes and experiences.

  • Challenger – a person, condition or situation that provides an opportunity for learning, growth and development.

  • Coach – a person who facilitates, supports, and champions learning, growth and development.

Knowing these roles helps us identify when we are in a drama creating role and what we can do to navigate to a drama busting role. In the next post we’ll further our analysis to discover how we can use our understandings of drama to gain power over it and even prevent it altogether. It is all part of the march towards our Ditch the Drama™ workshop. I invite you to check back next week and don’t forget to sign up for the workshop; it’s fast approaching.