Some people get the two confused. Loving yourself doesn’t mean you’re self-centered. But you can bet that bullies will accuse their target of it when they realize she’s growing a backbone.
Understand that when you start loving yourself enough not to take your bullies’ opinions of you seriously, the bullies will take notice of it right away. They’ll realize that they no longer have power over you. To get that power back, they will try like the devil to guilt you by accusing you of either selfishness or self-centeredness.
Don’t fall for that con game! When bullies lose the benefits they’ve grown accustomed to getting at your expense, they always get irate. Right or wrong, whenever someone has had power over another person for a long time and has gotten used to having that power, then suddenly loses it, of course, they’re going to be upset- and intensely so.
But don’t concern yourself with how your bullies feel. After all, they never gave a thought to your feelings the entire time they jerked you around.
Ditch these people! The sooner, the better! You’re not being selfish by choosing to put yourself first. What you’re doing is having the courage to love yourself and treat yourself better.
Realize that the bullies are the self-centered ones, in expecting you to go on being their doormat. No one has the right to expect you to put up with something they wouldn’t tolerate if it were happening to them.
To expect any differently from another person than what they’d do shows a complete lack of respect for people other than themselves and is sheer arrogance, self-entitlement, and stupidity.
There’s a name for this- double-standard!
Remember that we teach others how to treat us. And how we teach them to treat us is by how well we treat ourselves- by the boundaries we set, our ability to say “no,” and whether we continue to allow them to be in our lives.
Bullies are fake. They have to be to instill fear in those around them. And they resent anyone content with themselves and comfortable in their own skin.
1. Most bullies are highly insecure– more insecure than others; people who are themselves are usually more charming, seductive, and graceful. An authentic person will captivate others without trying. Because of his openness and fluidity, he draws people to him like a magnet. And bullies are jealous of anyone who enjoys good relations with others.
Understand that not only are bullies insecure, but they’re also vain. Authentic people outshine them without even trying and just their presence alone makes the bullies appear less alluring and charismatic to others.
Avoid these vanity bullies like the plague because they will find a way to destroy you if you stay around them. These people will only force you to suppress your natural charm and goodness, so you won’t look like you’re better than them.
2. People who are themselves don’t have to make any effort because they are their natural selves. On the other hand, being fake requires a lot of work. There are also a lot of worries that go with it- worries that you might slip up and get your lies twisted, that you may accidentally expose yourself through your actions, and that your true personality will somehow seep through.
Bullies resent the fact that authentic people don’t have to work and worry as they do.
But no matter what these bullies may throw at you, never be afraid to be yourself. Never hide anything about you. Because if you do, you’ll only lose a bit of yourself each time you put on an act until you lose yourself entirely.
To be fake, you have to work too hard. I’m too lazy for that. And so is anyone who prefers to be themselves.
No one enjoys the thought of getting older, I’m no exception. However, if we’re lucky to live long enough, it is an unavoidable reality we’ll all face eventually. And it sure as hell beats the alternative.
The reasons we fear the advancement of age is the loss of our youthful good looks, decline of physical strength and endurance and the rising possibility of illness and death…all very legitimate concerns.
I have often heard Judge Judy tell young litigants whom stood before her, “Beauty fades but dumb is forever”.
She’s right. And I believe her definition of “dumb” is not level of intelligence per se, but the refusal to learn anything new and hold on to beliefs and values which may never benefit us. If we aren’t learning, we aren’t growing and being from a small town, I’ve met countless people my age whom haven’t learned much and continue to hold prejudices which should have long been done away with, while lamenting about and dreading getting older.
But getting older is certain. Why not be grateful for each day given you? And continue to learn and grow? As the old saying goes, “There’s no fool like an old fool.”.
Intelligence and the wisdom we’ve gained over the years always trumps beauty, strength, health, or anything physical because once we’ve lost all the physical blessings we once had, smarts and a good heart are the only things we’ll have left before we finally leave this world.
There are many positives to getting older. Here are my takeaways:
1. I feel very blessed to have lived this long. A lot of people never make it to be this age.
2. Being older has made me confident and comfy in my own skin, giving me the freedom to be myself without fear.
3. I have become choosy of the people I keep in my life, preferring family and a few of my closest friends. I prioritize the people I love, who love me and who mean the most.
4. I don’t waste time with people who are fake or who don’t have my back. I love myself enough to walk away from toxic people who would otherwise bring me down and I can do it free of guilt.
5. It’s much easier to say, “NO”.
6. I have gained a truckload of knowledge and wisdom!
I wouldn’t trade any of these benefits for all the beauty or money in the world, which is why I don’t toil over my age nor do I hide it because I consider it an asset and a testament to how far I’ve come.
Mary Kay Ashe once said, “A woman who tells her age will tell anything.”
Because, a woman who tells her weight? Now there’s a woman who will tell anything!
To become comfortable in your own skin, it takes several years and plenty of life lessons and experiences. It takes being knocked down enough times by enough people before you can finally say, enough is enough and choose to be happy.
And when we choose to be happy, despite our imperfections and what others think or say of us, we choose to be truly free! Free from the constraints of longing to fit in- free from the constraints of conformity!
To be comfortable in your own skin means loving and accepting all parts of you- the good, the bad, and the downright ugly.
It means doing what fulfills you and makes you happy.
It means living life on your own terms.
It means refusing to apologize for who you are.
It means allowing yourself to make mistakes and learn from them.
It means refusing to live up to standards and expectations other than your own.
It means making time for hobbies and interests.
It means making time for your family and closest friends.
It means not being afraid to say no or to set boundaries.
It means not being afraid to ask for what you want.
It means following your dreams.
It means working toward your goals.
It means celebrating your successes and accomplishments.
It means not being afraid to ask for help when you need it.
It means being selective of friends and who you spend time with.
It means accepting and embracing differences in people.
It means having empathy and compassion for others.
It means putting yourself and your health first.
It means being realistic with goals and patient with the time it takes to reach them.
It means being present in the moment.
It means knowing your limitations.
It means knowing what you want in life and going after it.
It means being clear on what you will and will not tolerate.
It means loving yourself enough to know when it’s time to walk away.
It means knowing that you’re worthy of respect, love, compassion, friendship, and peace.
After being bullied for so long, targets can develop social anxiety. They withdraw from people because they fear future attacks. The target’s spirit has been beaten down and broken and the person has been abused to the point of losing faith in humanity. Also, they’re reprogrammed to believe the bullies’ lies that they aren’t worthy of love and friendship. They are under the presumption that it’s much safer not to engage in any social interaction.
But what the target doesn’t realize is that in closing himself off from the rest of the world, he unknowingly limits himself in all aspects of life.
Humans were created to socialize and to have relationships. When targets create this invisible fortress around them, it doesn’t ensure their safety but only brings about more bullying. Bullies get their power from our fear. They are like ferocious animals who can smell fear from a mile away and believe me. They take full advantage.
Moreover, targets miss out on relationships that, otherwise, could be and would be fulfilling and rewarding. They unwittingly forego opportunities for friendship, dating, even good jobs that can produce personal success and financial well-being. Because if a person doesn’t believe in themselves, no one else will- that includes potential friends, dates, and company managers and supervisors. No one wants to be friends with, date, or hire someone who isn’t sure of himself unless they have low self-esteem themselves.
People recognize, if only subconsciously, social anxiety when they see it and not only through the more obvious signs, such as quietness, avoidance, trembling, blushing, stuttering or sweaty palms.
Social anxiety can also be more covert, showing itself in less obvious ways:
Excessive laughing and giggling
Appearing normal on the outside but nervous and shaky on the inside
Excessive humor and being overly funny or no sense of humor at all
Excessive sarcasm/having a smart-alicky attitude
Being overly friendly/too nice
Shutting down/freezing up- unable to talk or move
Fidgeting/can’t sit still
Lack of or too much eye contact
Poor posture/looking down all the time
Having a hard time keeping up with a conversation
Talking too loudly, too fast, too soft, too slow, or not at all
Excessive use of foul language
Wearing attire that is provocative or super-revealing
A style that is “perceived” as separatist or out of the ordinary (goth, punk-rock, etc.)
The difficult thing is that those covert signs don’t always mean that the person has social anxiety. Many people just have their own sense of style or they may be naturally introverted. They may also have a boisterous personality. If you do not know the person or aren’t close to them, it’s hard to tell.
But one thing that is noticeable is if the person never exhibited this kind of behavior or look before and suddenly, or within a short amount of time transitions into it. And these kinds of changes can only be noticeable to those who are close to the person or have been around the person for years.
Therefore, if you know a person who is showing these signs, instead of pointing a finger and judging them cruelly, ask questions and find out why. You may not realize that person could be a target of bullying or another form of abuse.
And if you are a target of bullying and struggling with social anxiety, I want you to know that you don’t have to live in that invisible prison forever. Bullies do not deserve value and you shouldn’t place any worth to their opinions of you. Understand that you are enough and that your bullies haven’t earned your respect nor your attention.
Only value the opinions or thoughts of the people who love you and whose opinions deserve your consideration, attention, and acknowledgement.
Start loving yourself and practicing self-care. Relax and be yourself. Embrace your flaws and quirks because we all have them whether we admit it or not. Allow yourself to make mistakes and learn from them. I promise you that you’ll be much happier and have more peace of mind when you do.
Babies are so adorable! They have that charm and innocence that no other age group has. They don’t worry about what others think of them and they never try to impress others. They’re sweet, pure, completely authentic, and have hearts of gold.
Babies have not a care in the world what people think of them. They have no inhibitions whatsoever. They’re not afraid to cry and express their wants and needs. You can see it in the way little toddlers shamelessly coo, laugh, babble, skip, run, and dance in front of anyone. These little sweeties are fearless. They’re not afraid to show their emotions, express their thoughts, show their creativity.
Their precious little souls are completely open. They give, share, and receive love with an open and grateful heart. They love being loved and doted on and will receive it with a soft coo or laugh.
Everything starts with self-love and babies are a perfect example of it.
Sadly, as time passes and these babies get older, they slowly and incrementally become tainted by the ways of people and the world. Many are raised in toxic environments and by parents who are critical and abusive to them. So, they build a protective wall around themselves to try and keep the contamination out. Because their feelings get discounted, ridiculed, even punished by family members and others, they learn to mask those feelings. They collect emotional baggage as they become preschoolers, school-aged kids, then teenagers, and finally, adults.
Many are also raised by drug-addicted, mentally ill, and neglectful adults and they build walls to protect themselves from that as well. Many must learn to raise themselves.
Low self-esteem and lack of confidence are not the characteristics we’re born with. They’re instilled in us by either by well-meaning family members who wish to keep us humble and sweet, or they’re force-fed to us by bullies and abusers.
As a result, many babies grow into people who are under the false belief that they are unlovable and don’t deserve to have their wants and needs met and thus, people who are filled with either anger and self-loathing, or sad, depressed, helpless victims.
We all go through these terrible changes, even those who aren’t bullied, and only few people in this world manage to keep that confidence and joy they were born with, that is, IF there is anyone who does. Life’s disappointments, hurts, and heartaches have ways of doing these things to all of us. However, people who are bullied and abused suffer the worst changes.
They stop expressing emotions and give up asking for anything because, sometime during their childhoods, they were conditioned by other people to think that they’re self-centered and wrong for ever needing or wanting anything out of life.
Therefore, they resign themselves to the attitude that, things are “just the way they are” and that there’s nothing they can do to change anything.
And when you tell them about self-love and how important it is, they wince at the idea because it makes them uncomfortable. But, again, they have been programmed to think that self-love is somehow self-absorbed and evil. I can relate to this because, when I was thirteen and fourteen years old, I did the exact same when I was first told about the idea of self-love and self-care.
The thought of looking at myself in the mirror every day and telling myself “I love you” or “You’re beautiful,” “You’re Smart,” “You’re awesome,” etc., felt both weird and downright sickening because I was under the impression that it was all a sign of sheer vanity.
Self-love can feel downright painful after you’ve wasted years and decades hating and degrading yourself because it’s not something you’re accustomed to doing. Anything new and out of the ordinary feels painful at first. Like all things, it must become a habit first and it can only become habit through rigorous learning and practice.
‘You see? My bullies and a few abusive others had sold me on the idea that any form of self-care or self-love was abhorrent and self-serving. I was under the misguided belief that self-degradation and self-criticism was a virtue and a sign of being humble and meek. I thought that was what normal people did, as I watched a few family members do the same thing.
Some of my family members still do this at times and it breaks my heart. If only they could see, I mean, truly see their value and that they’re wonderful people who are worth more than gold.
The truth is that self-hatred is the equivalent of having a millstone hung from your neck and having to drag it around everywhere you go because it’s exhausting. It zaps your energy. It takes the magic, wonder, and excitement from your life. It keeps you stuck and worse, invites more disrespect and abuse from others.
Self-love only comes from within, never from without. It’s not something you can get from a partner, a spouse, or a boatload of friends. It doesn’t come from having a banging body or wearing fancy clothes, hairdos, or makeup. Money can’t buy self-love. Power doesn’t give it to you and neither does prestige. Self-love comes from the heart and only the heart.
Self-love is about self-acceptance and being perfectly okay with your imperfections. It comes from being comfortable in your own skin and not caring even the slightest what others think or say of you.
In order to find peace and joy in life, self-love is a must-have. It helps you to achieve your goals and realize your dreams and aspirations. It determines your outcomes- whether you succeed or fail. It helps you to better re-frame bad situations and see them as learning experiences. Self-love gives you peace of mind.
In a nutshell, self-love gives you complete freedom! It is the key to happiness and joy!
Don’t you think you deserve to be at peace with yourself? Don’t you think you deserve happiness and joy? I do.
So, be like a baby. Love yourself. Know that your true colors are vibrant and never be afraid to show them. Dance like you’ve never been ridiculed. And play like you’ve never fallen and scraped your knee. Express your emotions. Love, laugh, and live.
You’ll be surprised at how everything will change for the better! I promise!
Let’s face it. We live in a society of three things that kill peace and happiness- self-loathing, self-consciousness, and low self-esteem; and it shows every day. We see people with victim mentality, people running around in fear, and people who carry unnecessary guilt.
Targets of bullying do this all the time to prove something to their classmates, neighbors, or coworkers. Even people who aren’t necessarily targets of bullying but have been brainwashed by media to believe that they’re somehow responsible for the evil in the world do the same thing. I want you to understand that you are not responsible for someone else’s atrocious and unspeakable actions.
For example, last summer, we saw on the news, where people people would kneel before certain groups to virtue signal and prove they weren’t racist, xenophobic, or homophobic. And while these people were kneeling, those they were kneeling before only laughed. It was quite pathetic.
‘You see? Here’s the thing. If you know who you are and that you aren’t any of these things, you don’t have to prove it.
My point is that that if you know who you are, what you stand for, and that you haven’t done anything wrong- if you know in your heart that you’re not what others say you are, there’s no need to bend over backwards and jump through hoops to prove otherwise.
At the same time, you absolutely must loathe evil and yes, even speak out against it. But virtue signaling isn’t necessary.
I hate racism, xenophobia, and homophobia with a passion and I speak out against it. I hate anything that marginalizes human beings on the basis of being different and not their character and their behavior. But I won’t take responsibility for the despicable behavior of other people and I will never virtue signal to prove anything because I don’t have to.
I know who I am and I know that my virtues are there whether they’re visible or not.
So let your goodness and humanity speak for itself. Let your truth do the talking for you. Stop being afraid of conflict and of being labeled. If you’re carrying guilt that isn’t your burden to carry, stop it right now. Know that a fearful person is a controllable person. Don’t be that person!
Don’t be the person who is constantly trying to prove something to others because, in the end, you only demean and degrade yourself.
Instead, be the person who hates and speaks out against evil and wrongdoing. Be the person who shows love to people of different races, nationalities, orientations, religions, beliefs, or any other differences. But most of all, be the person who’s positivity, love, and good deeds speak for themselves. Remember that we’re all human beings deserving of dignity and love.
Yes! You can do both at the same time, but few people know where this healthy balance lies. May people are under the impression that kindness is weakness, which means that they believe that it’s a zero-sum game. They assume that you cannot be kind to others and yourself at the same time. I’m here to debunk this assumption.
Although it’s true when it goes to extremes, a healthy balance of kindness is a virtue! It’s all about keeping in that happy middle.
First, let me discuss the imbalances and extremes here:
1. Too kind or “nice.” When the niceness goes to extremes- when you’re “too nice” and let others use and walk on you, you set yourself up to be a doormat and that’s never good. A person who’s too nice is often so because they seek approval from others. So, they say yes to everything- even things they’d rather say no to. This isn’t healthy and it only attracts bullies and others who will only use and abuse you.
2. Not kind at all- a jerk or worse, a bully. Because you’ve been hurt one too many times, you no longer care about the feelings of other people, and you treat others like crap and use them to achieve your own agenda. If you go this route, you’ll only miss opportunities to make good friends and improve your relationships with your family. You’ll always be lonely because no one wants to be around a jerk and everyone despises a bully.
The trick is to extend kindness to others and reserve your jerky side for only those who use, abuse, and disrespect you. Say no if someone asks or demands that you do something you don’t want to do. Refuse to get sucked into drama.
Extend to the janitor the same respect you give to the CEO. Treat the poor and homeless with dignity. Befriend the kid who has no friends at school. Be kind to the combat veteran with severe PTSD and who everyone thinks is crazy. Give your seat to the elderly woman using a walker. Be kind to those who are powerless and cannot do anything for you. For that’s the real test of character.
Stand up for yourself when arrogant bullies attack you and don’t back down. You deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, just like the next person. Command the same well-treatment that everyone else has a right to.
Don’t be too nice, but don’t be an unfeeling jerk either. And, for the love of Pete, never be a bully! Know that there’s a happy middle and stay in it.
Charles Manson Had Many, Many Followers. Jesus Only Had Twelve. If You Are Bullied, This is for You.
If you are a victim of bullying, you probably have very few friends, if any. It’s not your fault. It really isn’t. Truth be known, you’ve more than likely been bullied by your peers for a long time now and your lack of true friends has compelled you to question your own value.
You wonder what your are doing wrong and may even wonder if you’re a good person. Your family and those who truly care about you may assure you that you are indeed a great person, yet you may be thinking, “If I’m so great, why is it that people at school or at work treat me so badly?”
Believe me, I understand, having been through the same situation and had those very thoughts once upon a time.
However, a lack of friends does not mean you’re a bad person nor does it mean you’re doing anything wrong. You are NOT weak, stupid, ugly, crazy, trash or whatever your bullies may call you. No!
In fact, you just may be doing something right! And because you’re doing the right things, you stand out for it.
Think about it this way: Charles Manson, leader of the infamous Manson Family whom were responsible for several gruesome murders back in the late sixties, had many followers. He was responsible for the murders of high-profile celebrities Sharon Tate and Abigail Folger. It’s believed that he was responsible for the murders of over a hundred people.
But Jesus Christ, on the other hand, had only twelve. He never murdered anyone. In fact, He was sinless.
Also, several big-name celebrities, such as Taylor Swift, Tamar Braxton, Lady Gaga, Prince, Tom Cruise, and Patrick Swayze also got bullied either in a past job, in school or sometime in their pasts and they were very talented and exceptional people. Some of them still get bullied today via hate mail or hate messages online.
Case in point: People who are great, uber talented, exceptional always stand out from the rest. And those who stand out will be targeted by bullies. Do you understand now? Great! I knew that you would!
Rest assured that despite the vile treatment that you may be getting from others, you are awesome and you still matter! Keep standing strong and never let bullies define who you are!