It isn't just partner type relationships that can benefit from having a rethink around blame, our relationships with our children, family members and colleagues can all benefit too.
Of course, you don't want to take responsiblity for any colleagues who shirk, but just consider whether or not your communication (or lack of) is in some way enabling them to shirk and that perhaps they don't see it as shirking. Or your child leaves things lying around and you are constantly 'having to nag' them to put things away, but you've never had a conversation about personal responsibility, or never set times for you to all muck in and do your bit of tidying together. Or just put the stuff away without complaining.
Looking back to when my daughter was just a few years old, she was uber tidy. I had a rule, only one box of toys out at a time, clear them away before the next box came out. We'd clear up together (and often make it a game) and the place was always tidy before bathtime. But then I started working long hours and travelling, so childcare moved to about 90% her dad's responsibility. Then I would come home to a mess, toys not put away, dishes in the sink. My resentment (a.k.a. blame) of my partner's untidyness (and his attitude towards it) built up and festered over the years and was no doubt one of the contributing factors as to why the relationship broke down. At some point I hired a cleaner, which lifted the cloud of negative emotions that would previously descend upon me when I arrived home from work, but by then that, and other things, had already seen us on a downward spiral as a couple.
I've coached teams with people who instantly blame others when things go wrong. It's hard to break the cycle. It's often caused by poor managers, who don't allow their staff to make mistakes, or by people who think the only way to make themselves look good is by making other people look bad (oh, we've all met at least one of those, surely?). Of course, if you lose a couple of million dollars for the company there needs to be some explanation (and it probably needs to be quite good), but often it is a matter of tweaking plans to ensure things stay on target, or allowing people to take risks and accepting that, sometimes, those risks don't pay off. Of course in a work situation, people are worried they will be fired, especially in the current economic environment. But finger pointing doesn't produce great teams and the best leaders know this.
It all comes back to emotional intelligence. This isn't some innate quality, by the way, this can be (and is) learned as part of the coaching journey.
Picture from referenced article on Tiny Buddha http://bit.ly/14mrBft