Too many targets of bullying grow too paralyzed with fear to make a move and take control of their destinies. Their bullies and abusers have reprogrammed them to believe that, no matter how hard they try, they’ll always be losers and failures. They’ ve been trained to believe that, to be accepted, they must always march in lockstep with the rest of society- to tread lightly and never rock the boat . And if they didn’t walk carefully, what was in store for them would be emotional- even physical brutality.
I understand because I’ve been there. I know the fear all too well.
In short, targets are taught to take the path of least resistance and stay in their comfort zones. But do you really live your best life when you choose this path instead of your own?
To see positive change in your life, you must be willing to take risks. Whether you’re working on achieving a short-term goal or chasing a dream you’ve had your whole life or whether you want to rid your life of bullies/abusers and surround yourself with better people, risk is not only expected but required.
To get something you never had, you will need to do things you’ve never done and that can be scary. To create something beautiful into your life means you will have to push through the birth pains first, it’s the only choice you have.
I took a risk when I decided to stand up to abuse. I also took risks when I wrote and published my first book, “From Victim to Victor (A Survivor’s True Story of Her Experiences with School Bullying.”
I knew it would be risky and I was prepared for it.
In doing both, I not only faced the possibility of failure, but I offended and made many people angry. I lost a lot of people I thought were friends. But that’s alright because I look back now and realize that I really didn’t lose friends at all.
What I did was weed out the people I thought were friends- the fakers, posers, and imposters who only pretended to be but were never friends in the first place.
I also knew that the book would be painful to write because it required that I relive the torment. I chose to push through the pain. Understand that if you ever want to achieve something great, you must step out of your comfort zone and face fear head on.
Life is a gamble. Everything is chance. You can’t win the game if you don’t roll the dice.
And if you really stop and think about it, we roll the dice when we do the most basic things in life – when we get out of bed in the morning, or walk out of our houses, or get in the car to go to work every day. In life, risk is unavoidable. So why not take bigger risks and go after what you want?
Wouldn’t you much rather face the fear of risk now than live with the pain of regret later? I sure would.
After the book was published and a few classmates read it, oh boy! I got quite a few nasty, hateful, and threatening messages and yes, some of it was pretty scary. But I chose to stand strong and continue speaking my truth.
My goal wasn’t only to become a published author, but to use what I endured years ago to help others who are going through it now. I wanted to be the person that I didn’t have, and to give other targets the support I was denied.
But before I could do that, I had to be willing to take risks and to endure some pain along the way. It meant risking my time, my comfort, and my associations. I had to be willing to remove all the negative people from my life and make room for people who were positive, uplifting, and empowering. And you will have to do the same if you want to follow your passion, find your purpose, and create a better life for yourself.
You must be willing to risk it all because the last thing you want is to wake up one morning- eighty years old and say, I woulda, shoulda, coulda done this or I woulda, shoulda, coulda done that.
As for me, I don’t want to have to say, “Oh no! If I’d only done this or that,” or “I had this great idea five, ten, twenty, or thirty years ago and I didn’t act on it because I was too afraid.”
So, do it while you can and be willing to accept the risk that goes with it.
It is either do or die. Risk now or regret later!
“Get busy living or get busy dying.” – Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption