The Big Game of Life is a power struggle with others which serves
to allow the player to avoid personal responsibility and refuse
to look at his own behavior! Virginia Satir first described the
Big Game. The Big Game is often one aspect of the Family Disease
or I Have the Right to Tell You What To Do! The power struggle
disease is prevalent in families with dysfunctional behavior.
Disease is the struggle between domination and submission, between
addictions and co-dependency. It keeps the people involved in
dysfunctional behavior as they struggle for control. The game
must be called off in order to win maturity and independence.
The tug of war that is behind the Big Game has been "I know
what is best for you." The Big Game is the basic power struggle
where each individual tries in a convoluted way to get their
underlying needs for power met.
yourself in the act of thinking and worrying about what someone
else is doing is the first step to stopping the game. Looking
at your need to focus your energy on the other person instead
of yourself is the second step. A simple formula to remind yourself
is " ..... is going to do what .... is going to do." Cats practice
cat behavior; snakes practice snake behavior. Mary practices
Mary behavior and Steve practices Steve behavior. You can only
expect a person to practice behavior that is consistent with
his attitudes, values, coping mechanisms and unrecovered addictions.
Stewing and fretting over another person's choices is a way
of binding up energy for both of you.
from the Big Game of Life is one of the greatest freedoms that
you can give yourself. When you give up your shoulds and expectations
for others and focus on cleaning up your own act, a heavy weight
is lifted from your shoulders. Creativity and productivity flow
in as you release your co-dependent manipulation. You have more
time and energy for more exciting challenges in your life than
trying to fix someone else.
represents the power struggle that lies between you and the
other person. The solution is remarkably easy and yet so difficult:
Stop acting out the Family Disease! Stop playing the Big Game!
Simply put down the rope. Stop the power struggle. Stop playing
tug of war with your life. Let go of the rope. Let it go. Just
let it go.
for Moving Through the Big Game
the family of origin script of the Big Game (controlling others)
at an unconscious level. As you progress in maturity you bring
it to a more conscious level and become aware of what you are
doing. You start owning that you are playing out the Family Disease.
upset with others who play the Big Game (projecting what you
don't like about yourself on someone else and becoming angry.)
about the Big Game and recognizing how one has played it. You
learn to recognize the players in the game and the crass and
subtle manipulations that people use to control each other.
the bad feelings (guilt and discomfort over using blaming or
manipulating, etc.) because you have played through the family
it to a conscious level by deciding to catch yourself when you
are playing the game (learning to break the blame/manipulate
that the Family Disease of the Big Game was a part of your upbringing
so of course you would catch it. Controlling others is learned
behavior; children learn what they see so it stands to reason
that you would develop a part of your personality that has a
need to control others.
how playing the Big Game served you. Figure out how it played
a function or a purpose for you. Did it get you what you wanted?
Did it make you feel powerful? How did it help you? How has
it hurt you? Has focusing on what is best for others kept you
from looking at your own behavior?
that part of yourself that needed to play the Big Game. Understand
that this is only a part of your total personality that needs
to be understood and accepted. It is not bad; it is just learned
behavior that can be unlearned to help you become a healthier
yourself when you feel the urge to judge or try to control others.
Watch your anger when others do things you do not approve of.
yourself for playing the control game. The need to control others
is just learned behavior and you can change it. You were not
a bad person for learning what was modeled in your family of
origin. You can recognize that there was really nothing to forgive
-- learning about one's needs to control others and succumb
to the manipulation from others is all part of life's lessons
that you came to learn.
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