Bullying: Bullies Lack Self Esteem
Students in Secondary Schools, Colleges and Universities often have problems associated with their self image. They develop into Adults with low self esteem, and many people in some responsible positions, hold questions of self doubt as to their abilities and cause stress to others because they hold low opinions of their own selves.
If we can give our children something they can hold forever, it should be faith in their own selves, and self esteem. Much of the issues today with teenagers being out of control and not having belief in their own worth, is linked to parents who also have low self esteem, and who cannot pass self esteem to their children.
This has led to a whole range of problems and issues for Society today. The News is full of teenage negative behaviors and schools are trying to work out how to handle this sensitive issue, with parents running to the Press when their child shoots a neighborhood, with stories of, he is really such a good son….’ and expecting the word to sympathize and empathize. Then you read about Companies and Workplaces where someone is negating or running down workmates, with staff leaving, or continuing employment feeling the stress and impact of professional bullying. Low esteem teenagers grow into low esteem adults, and continue to cause problems between the people they work with.
Most of us do, as we have had, seen or experienced negative child behavior as students in school or University, who now, as grown-up members of a workforce, are insecure co-workers continuing their insecure behaviors in the company of other co-workers, and also their own offspring in their own homes. Thus a race of insecurity continues to be spawned, and cries of ‘Bullying’ only aggravate the fear of those not willing to stand up against the bullied or the bully. There is little you can do about an insecure adult, as he has to solve his own insecurity and may not even realize he has it, as he has lived with it all his life. Nurturing and kindness only adds to it, so protecting is not the answer and I don’t have the answer either. They have to see their own problem. But you can help a child.
As a Teacher, I realized that amongst students are many who simply have no belief in themselves. They think that they are not liked or accepted because they are boring, or dull, tall, fat, or not rich, or different in some way. They are so unhappy in themselves that they just cannot learn. I started using IQ Tests, and also affirmations, in the 70’s, to help students regain belief in them as worthwhile individuals with belief in their own capabilities. It was these negative students who became the class disturbances, and their behavior caused disturbances for the other students. John Nash, the Noble Prize winner, was a class nuisance, and years later, was to win the Nobel Prize for Mathematics. Smart students were the gang leaders and the chief troublemakers, because of their low self esteem. Consider the current hacking and viruses being created by school drop-outs. The brains are being wasted because they lack self esteem and self worth, and the ability to see their own strengths. The Nerds of the past are now the brains of the present and the future. Behind every “Nerd’ the peers avoid and snigger at, is often a genius, and bullying starts because of low self opinion and as a way to balance the seeming ‘unfairness’, and often the bully is either physically or mentally inferior or superior to the victim. There is no bullying among equals. In this instance it takes the form of pranks and games between equals, and not as degrading and demoralizing as bullying. There is the victim and the perpetrator.
The story of John Nash, “A Beautiful Mind” is the book is my trigger for this article.
This is the important part…you are what you think you are.
“If you think you can, you can, and if you think you can’t, you can’t”
The problem with bullies is that they come from low self-esteem groups who ‘picked’ on other low self esteem groups. That is the irony….both groups have identification and self esteem problems and this is what needed to be solved. There had to be an answer as to how to learn to handle negative people.
The answer came with affirmations. It started with Sublime tapes. I started doing courses in Self Confidence using tapes that played positive affirmations in my ears as I slept. I listened to one of them while I was awake once, as that particular tape had worried me…and all it said was ‘I am worthy and I deserve the best in everything’ over and over again for the entire tape. Interesting, I had to look at why I had considered myself unworthy, and once I faced that, I was OK again. I couldn’t give the students tapes, so I started giving them affirmations instead, to look at themselves and see that not only did they have worth, but that they also had the right to ask for what they deserved in life…respect, fairness, justice, acceptance of their own individuality and differences. Once they accepted that they had rights and the right to be what they were, then they could learn without being held back by themselves and false fears.
This year while teaching Chinese students, I found many lack inner self confidence. They are fine in their own language, but because they are struggling with a second language, they think negative, and hinder their own learning. My own teaching was being held back by students having negative beliefs about their own ability to learn. I started using affirmations which again hopefully help them to give them confidence to believe in their own ability to learn.
I collected some affirmations from a website and simple affirmations such as, “I can and I will”, “I am Happy”, “I am healthy and attractive”, “ I can make the difference in my own life” “I control my life” adorn a part of the wall display to remind the students that they control their own lives, not what others say. http://bmindful.com/
There is a message in this for those experiencing unhappiness. You are in control of your own thoughts…and those thoughts become words you say, and also things you do, and the life you ultimately live. You can change your life….I have, and I know many others who have. It’s not others who make what you have, it’s you; and the best gift you can give yourself is to believe in yourself, even when others are negating you. That is their problem and their personal issue.
The best gift you can give your children is self esteem. Tell them they are wonderful from the day they are born and they will grow up to believe in themselves. Its not quite as easy as this, as in life they will also meet other models besides yourself who will give them opposing stories, but if there is an inbuilt sense of worth, they will find it easier to not lose their own belief and values.
Life can be so easy, if we have the ability to realize that everything you wish for is within your control. Richard Bach said that we only get in life what we ask for and most of us don’t ask for enough. We take what we have and consider that that is all we deserve. Those who get more demand more and make sure they get it.
A poem worth reading is ‘The Man in the Glass”. http://www.theguyintheglass.com/
When you get what you want in your struggle for self
and the world makes you king for a day
just go to the mirror and look at yourself
and see what that man has to say.
“It’s not the man in the fight that is important; it’s the fight in the man”
“Love Yourself…..and realize that you are worthy of being loved”