Being a target of bullying can make it hard to see the blessings in other aspects of your life. It keeps you focused on the problem instead of seeing your life as a whole.
When I was in school, although I was bullied horribly, and yes, it was bad, my life as a whole wasn’t bad. I can honestly say that I still had a good home.
My mother and grandmother had good jobs and compared to many of my classmates, we lived quite well. Therefore, in family, home, and finances, we were super-blessed.
I don’t remember a Christmas or birthday when my brother and I didn’t get exactly what we asked for. This is not to say we didn’t have our problems because we did. What family doesn’t? Our family problems consisted of myself and my siblings being children of divorced parents and a father who wasn’t present during those years. Although it hurt, we still functioned well as a family and those things were minor compared to most.
When I look back, I realize that we were blessed in that we didn’t have family members who were out committing crimes, nor were addicted to any hard drugs, other than an alcoholic or two. During those years, we didn’t have anyone who was dying of cancer, nor shot in the streets or killed in car accidents and plane crashes.
So, again, compared to many kids we knew, we had it pretty darned good.
At the time, I couldn’t see it. Understand that when you’re a bullied and tormented kid in school, you don’t see the beauty in other areas of your life. You lose sight of the blessings in the overall picture because bullying blinds you to it.
You can’t see the forest for the trees. That’s what bullying does to targets. It blinds them to their overall worth and clouds their perceptions of their own lives.
Bullies are constantly in your face, repeating the same lie over and over again:
“You’re worth nothing.”
“Your life is crap.”
“You don’t belong here.”
“You’re one of God’s mistakes.”
“Your mama should’ve aborted you while she had the chance.”
After so long, you finally believe the lies yourself.
Understand that kids’ brains are malleable, mushy, and moldable, which is why they’re so impressionable and easily influenced. Is it any wonder why religious cults, sexual predators, human traffickers, extremist groups, and street gangs, target kids for recruitment?
They catch them young so they can mold their vulnerable minds and groom them for service. Bullies do the same thing. They look for targets who are vulnerable and who are more likely to fall for anything.
With that said, shouldn’t we also catch them young to teach them confidence and resilience? Shouldn’t we catch them young to instill them with strength, good self-esteem, and the ability to protect themselves from such people?
Understand that bullies aren’t stupid. They’re often those who have learned all about Human Nature early on through abuse, through seeing some really bad things happen before they should have. Many bullies learn about the mere mechanisms of the human condition much earlier than other kids, then use it to exploit their targets.
Bullies may not be much good at anything else, but what they are good at is the subject of Human Nature and making predictions of how most people react to different things. They have ways of brainwashing you, convincing you that you’re a mistake and that your life means nothing.
And if you aren’t careful, bullies will ultimately blind you to any positives that flow into your life and trick you into believing that your life is worse than what it is. Understand this: Bullies LIE!
How you successfully overcome this is to be mindful and to count your blessings, however difficult it may be.
Focus on the good things in your life.
Point out your good qualities, talents, and gifts.
Make positive affirmations by countering the bullies’ lies and making “I AM” statements.
“I am beautiful”
“I am intelligent.”
“I am worth something.”
“I am one of God’s blessings.”
“I am worthy of being born and being alive.”
“I am worthy of a good life.”
This is how you keep your self-esteem intact and prevent bullies from wrecking your self-esteem and your life.