Everywhere you look, you see slogans like, “Stop Bullying,” “Eradicate Bullying,” “No Bullying,” and other slogans. Not that that’s a bad thing. It’s actually a great thing with great intentions behind it.
We’d love to think that we could someday. Again, the above slogans are well-meaning and come from a good place, so I’m certainly not against such slogans.
However, the question remains. “Will we ever stop bullying completely?”
The reality is, no. We will never be able to completely annihilate bullying. Why? You may ask? It’s because bullying is an unfortunate and ugly part of human nature. Understand that we live in a fallen world and, in a fallen world, bullying will always exist.
This is not to say that bullying is okay, because it isn’t. In no way is this an excuse, but humans can be horrible predators. Yes. We should hold bullies accountable for their rotten behavior. But we should also teach targets of the mindsets of bullies and how they operate.
We should teach targets on how to reframe the attacks and psychological warfare that bullies launch against them.
For example, when a bully puts down and tries to define the target, we should teach the target not to think thoughts like:
“I must have done something wrong or to make him (the bully) angry”
“There must be something wrong with me.”
Instead, we should teach targets to think these kinds of thoughts when they’re attacked:
“The bully is doing something wrong,”
“There’s something wrong with the bully, not me,”
“The bully is the one with the problem.”
“The bully is the one acting like a fool and I don’t want him around me.”
Here’s another Example:
If you’re a target of bullying and a bully calls you a wimp, you should counter the bully’s attack by saying:
“No! You’re the wimp! Otherwise, you wouldn’t feel the need to be so loud, obnoxious, and rude!”
Always counter the bully’s attack, then call out his/her behavior.
This is how you reframe the bullies’ attacks and save your self-esteem. We must teach targets to see through bullies’ facades and acts of toughness, then counter them and call them out. We should also teach targets to stand up for themselves in case the bullies become violent. Only then will targets reclaim their power and cease to be targeted.
With knowledge comes empowerment!