These days there is all sorts of talk about bullies. How horrible bullying is, and how we can stop it. There are bullies in schools there are bullies at work even the bullies who claim to hate bullies often are seen acting like bullies. There are people who are called bullies are all over the place.
Many people talk about how much harm bullies do to a person’s self-confidence and even go as far as saying that bullies do harm to their mental health. To a very small point, these people are right. But it’s the wrong bully that people are focusing on. In all reality, the bully in your life is actually a character building assets when they are an external force. Yet nobody talks about the real bully that affects everyone at one time or another.
This bully is the toughest bully around. It is because you can’t hit them you only end up hurting yourself every time you attack this bully… You can’t tell the teacher on them. Mom and dad can’t protect you from them. The reason why is because that bully is you.
Yep. I am sure you have heard the phrase that you are your own worst enemy. Yet most people accept being bullied every day by themselves. Yes, you are what you say to yourself. Whether you are suffering from anxiety imposter syndrome or any other mental term that is being bandied about at this time if you look at the root of the problem it is because you are beating yourself up. You are essentially being a bully to yourself.
What is a bully?
This sounds like an easy question. The answer being, it is someone who is being mean to another person.
The correct answer is a bully is a person who robs you of your power and dignity. Anytime they have the opportunity to belittle you they seize upon it. Now why they act this way varies from they have their own low self-esteem issues so that’s how they are treated at home. They may be even trying to get your attention so that you will like them.
Why are you hitting yourself?
Now that you know what a bully is, look at yourself and see that you are often doing the very same thing to yourself. You often mean well yet you beat yourself up for the slightest infraction. It is often easier to understand the damage when we take it out into the physical world. I often ask people,
“Would you stand for a person who you know and they called you stupid, Dumb, ignorant, piece of crap, and worse?” Would you stand for that? Typically most people would say NO!
Yet you call yourself that and worse all the time. As a self-bully, you set yourself up for failure. Just so you can prove to yourself that you are not worthy of receiving accolades or rewards. There are people who have come into money and just as quickly as they received it, the money is gone. The word is self-sabotage. The reason it happens is that often people don’t see themselves at that increased value so they quickly drop back to a lower value they feel as they are worth.
So you are your own worst enemy in this case. Look at the golden rule. Love your neighbor as you love yourself. The bible cites it as Do unto others you would have them do unto you. Most people look at that rule as, treat people as you would want to be treated. Yeah, they are right that is part of it. Yet, how can you expect to love your neighbor if you can’t even love yourself?
Go From Bully To Friend
It takes work as anything that is worth the trouble. First, you have to realize when you are beating yourself up. Don’t allow yourself to say demeaning words to yourself. If you wouldn’t stand for an abusing spouse to do it then don’t allow yourself to do it either. If you do something “dumb” Smile be gentle and make the correction. Joke with yourself but don’t be sarcastic. I am finding that though sarcasm is a way to not appear mean it really does build a wall against others. If you are sarcastic with yourself your mind takes that and applies it literally. Much like the questions you ask yourself.
You are going to stumble and immediately want to revert to the self-abuse line of thinking. If you catch yourself saying hurtful words to yourself first stop. Take a deep breath. Then accept that you screwed up and that it is just fine. Nobody died, nor were they hurt. It was a dumb idea in hindsight but you learned from the experience. You are now smarter. Again you have to be gentle with yourself. Your psyche has had often years of self-abuse heaped upon it. As you improve and learn to love yourself more. You will notice that small things don’t bother you nearly as much as they use to. That’s because you are not reminding yourself how horrible of a person you thought you were.
You can even have physical bullies come along and they have no power over you because you love yourself. You know what they are after and you can easily shrug the verbal abuse off. You are able to be a more confident leader. You are more secure in your actions because you have taken the step to stop abusing yourself and giving yourself the power to be you again.
So in closing don’t torment yourself you are human just like everybody else. If you make mistakes you make mistakes. If you nail it, you celebrate. If you have problems with getting over the barrier of self-sabotage then you may look at coaching or join a mastermind or other ways of self-help books or even a newsletter to help you stay positive? Whatever path you take remember you got this and it is just one step at a time.