Bullies and Virtue Signaling

Seasoned bullies are masters at virtue-signaling and making themselves look like the angels they aren’t. Many of my classmates were expert virtue signalers. I remember sitting in class and being pregnant with my first child. One of my bullies, we will call her Amy, told me I was a sinner because I’d gotten pregnant before getting married. And Amy was one of those girls who everyone knew slept around with every Tom, Dick, and Harry.

Not that I ever judged her for it because what she did on the weekends was nobody’s business but hers. However, the point I make here is that she took it upon herself to judge me in front of an audience. And she did it to prove something to them.

She also told me that my child was a bastard and would be better off dead than to have me for a mother. The last thing she said was that I should never be allowed to get married nor have kids.

Understand that any time a bully publicly passes judgement on you, they only do it to feel like they’re better than you- so they can delude themselves, you, and everyone else into thinking that they’re above you on the totem pole of morals and decency.

The reason this bullying classmate accused me of being unvirtuous is to try and prove to everyone else that she wasn’t . She wanted everyone to think that she was as pure as the driven snow and that she was above someone else. But, although no one said a word, I think they all knew who she really was and what her attack on me was all about.

Sadly, we see the same from radicals. They pander and virtue signal by raising their fists and worse, kneeling and bowing down to extremist groups and the only reason they do it is to try and prove to the rest of the world that they’re moral, decent, and above ignorance.

Vector illustration of a grovel in business

But here’s the thing.

If you know yourself and you know that you aren’t the label of the day, be it a “whore”, a philanderer, a racist, a conspiracy theorist, a nut job, or anything at all; you won’t feel you have to attack anyone else, pander, or virtue signal to prove it. Your goodness, morals, virtues are already there, and you know it and there’s no need to prove it.

When you truly know yourself and the definition of who you are, you won’t try to prove anything because it’s too much work and you know it’s a waste of your time and energy. You do not have to show others you have something if that something is something you already have.

Here’s another thing.

If anyone feels they must bend over backwards to prove something to the rest of the world, know that their willingness to pander and virtue signal- all that extra effort and energy expenditure comes from a guilty conscience and that there is something about themselves that they’re trying like the devil to hide.

These people are under the presumption that, the more efforts they make, the more personal sacrifices they make, and the more they try to “atone” by forcing themselves to do the most degrading and demeaning things, the more it shows that they’re not what the label of the day and current narrative says they are.

What they don’t realize is that it only means the opposite of what they’re trying to prove. Do you see where I’m going with this? Great! I thought that you would!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Your Mind Is Your Own. Keep It That Way.

Bullies don’t only want to hurt you or destroy your good name. More than anything, they want to get into your head and alter your mind.

The worst thing about bullying isn’t the physical assaults. Cuts and bruises heal easily. It isn’t even the name-calling, the smears, the rumors, or the marginalization. It’s what it can do to the mind if we aren’t careful.

The worst thing that can happen to a target of bullying is when he begins to believe what he’s being told. The worst thing that happens is when she begins to see herself through the eyes of the very people who hate her and who want nothing more from her than her complete destruction and ruination.

Anytime a target begins to believe he is nothing, he does himself a huge disservice because he discards his own definition of him and replaces it with that of his bullies. He values the bullies’ opinions over his own.

I cannot stress enough the importance of loving yourself even when it looks as if others don’t love you back. You must continue to believe in yourself even when it seems that no one else does. You must also continue to stand your ground even when people want to bury you in it.’

That’s how you keep your confidence and self-esteem from tanking. It’s how you keep even a little bit of your dignity and it’s how you protect your spirit from being broken.

Yes, your confidence may take many blows, but it doesn’t have to die. Your self-esteem may be pummeled, but you can keep it for hitting rock bottom. Bullies may break off pieces of your dignity, but you don’t have to give them the piece of it you still hold for yourself. Your spirit may take a hard beating, but only you decide whether to let them break it.

In short, you don’t have to surrender everything that matters to your bullies.’

You have more power than you know. Your thoughts are the freest commodity you have. No matter what they take from you, they can never take your mind if you don’t let them.

“Power is not what you have but what the enemy thinks you have.” ~ Saul D. Alinsky (Rules for Radicals)

Think about that quote for a moment and realize that it’s what all bullies live by.

The Survivor of Bullying

The survivor of bullying who escapes the abuse first comes out with shock, anger, and sadness. But once the healing is underway, they’re filled with renewed hope.

When school or workplace bullying experiences have exposed you to the darkest sides of human nature, you have a stronger sense of your own endurance and capability. This is all because of what you have endured and were able to overcome.

You never know your own strength until you’ve overcome bullying, especially severe and chronic bullying.

Another takeaway is that the survivor has a stronger sense of people. She can smell fakery and BS from a mile away and can spot bullies before even talking to them. The survivor pays closer attention to how people carry themselves, body language, and the vibes and energy others put out.

survivors x-ray eyes

He is better able to avoid people who might want to harm him because he’s learned, the hard way, the importance of listening to his gut instinct and heeding it anytime something is even the slightest bit “off” about a person. In short, the survivor of bullying has learned that it’s okay, even paramount, that he trusts himself, and in that, his feelings and judgement.

On the other side of bullying, a survivor learns and develops the determination never to conform to the standards and criteria of others, but to live life on her terms because she knows what it’s like to be a slave to the approval of others. She knows what it’s like to be a prisoner to outside influences. She knows the powerlessness of having one’s pleasure depend of the permission of others. She knows what it’s like to be forced to apologize for simply being who she is and she’s not having any of it!

Overcoming past abuse gives the survivor a restored and refined sense of his worth and knowledge of the immense value he brings to this world. He awakens to his goodness and realizes that yes! He is worthy of love, friendship, affection, and of all the best things in life. He also realizes that he is loved and always was no matter what all those vile people told him!

The survivor of bullying ends up with a much clearer vision of what she will not tolerate nor settle for. She is unmovable in her refusal to kiss arse or bow down to anyone no matter what the cost may be. She’s spent enough years living on her knees and if she’s going to be punished for her unwillingness to kowtow, she’ll suffer those consequences standing up.

The survivor of bullying is also a fierce warrior for other victims. If he sees another person being bullied, he’s will stand up for that person and go toe to toe with the bullies to protect the target.

The survivor who has overcome bullying isn’t afraid to say no, nor to walk away from any relationship that doesn’t fulfill and nourish him. He refuses to be stuck in any environment that doesn’t allow him to grow and flourish.

The survivor is more aware than ever of what she deserves and goes after it with resilience and tenacity. Life’s given her enough of what she doesn’t want and now it’s time for her to go get what she knows is due her.

The survivor realizes, probably more than anyone, that life is short, and you only get one shot in this world. And she works diligently to create the life she knows she deserves, and she does it without guilt. She knows that she’s not entitled nor privileged. She realizes that the big bad world owes her nothing. And that’s okay.

The survivor realizes that there’s no such thing as a free ride because, heck, no one ever gave him anything but hell. What he understands more than anything as that all you have is you and the only person you can depend on is you. So, he knows that reaching his goals and dreams is up to him and him alone. And he works toward what he wants with a fervor.

The survivor of bullying makes it a point never to take anyone for granted but lets her family and friends know that she loves and values them. Why? Because she knows what is like to be alone, unwanted, and abused and she would never want anyone- especially the people she cares about feel that way or endure it.

The survivor of bullying savors every wonderful moment, every positive encounter, and every happy event because he has seen enough negativity.

What the survivor enjoys more than anything else is wonderful relationships and happy moments, and most of all, she’s grateful for them. She also enjoys helping others who go through what she once endured. And she uses her experiences to encourage them and give them hope.

Sometimes, you must be torn down to be built up again. Sometimes you must first be dejected and left lonely before you can truly appreciate the family and friendships you have later. And sometimes, it takes being forced into the chains of others’ approval and validation before you can enjoy the freedom of self-love and the indifference to the opinions of those who don’t matter and, perhaps, never should have mattered.

Loving Yourself Means Loving EVERYTHING That is You

It means loving every single part of yourself that you can do nothing about. What it doesn’t mean is loving some things about yourself and either hating or being ashamed of other parts. It means loving yourself completely- your entire self and all that you are- loving your whole being.

Whether you’re rich, poor, or middle-class, embrace it. It’s a part of who you are. Whether you’re Black, White, Hispanic, Jewish, or any other race, never be ashamed of it! Embrace it and love it because it too is a part of you.

Whether you have brown eyes, blue eyes or green; dark, red, or blonde hair; dark or light skin- love those things. Those are also a part of you.

Love your nationality, your country, your state, community, and neighborhood because they too make up the person that is you. Whether you are American or Japanese, British, or Indian, love and take pride in those things about you. Whether you’re from Texas, New York, or Nova Scotia, love those things too. Take pride in and love yourself, no matter your heritage!

Also, accept your past and be okay with it. If you grew up poor and made it out, don’t be ashamed. Be proud of it because it’s a testament to how far you’ve come. If you grew up in an abusive household, own that too because it’s proof that you survived and overcame. The same goes if you were once a drug-addict or alcoholic but now sober. Be not ashamed of those things, for those are things you’ve triumphed over. Even if you have a past of crime and imprisonment and have turned your life around, see it as evidence of how far you’ve come and use it to teach others.

Love yourself no matter your weight, height, or whether you have freckles, glasses, or braces- they too are the building blocks of you. If you’d like to change them and can change them, by all means, change them.

Lose weight if you like, get contacts if you don’t like the glasses, and look forward to beautiful teeth once those braces come off. That’s perfectly okay. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to become what you feel would be a better version of yourself.

But love the things you can’t change about yourself. Embrace yourself. Even better, celebrate yourself. Know that each of us is perfectly made, flaws and all!

Know that how you look, your past, your weight, height; eye, hair, and skin color; race, nationality, creed, upbringing, orientation, religion, values- each are the building blocks that make up the whole you. The only thing you should judge yourself on is your character.

So, if you know in your heart that you are a good person and have love to offer others, love yourself too. And do it for all that you are.

Remember that when it all comes down, no person is better than another. See yourself as neither superior nor inferior, but just as good as the next person. You are you and you love it!

Accept yourself

Love yourself

Believe in yourself

Take care of yourself

Know your value and your worth

Know that you are worthy of the best life has to offer!

When I Stopped Caring What People Thought

When I stopped caring what others thought of me, I stopped apologizing for being me. Instead of judging myself, I began loving and accepting myself- all aspects, the good and the not-so-good. I started living up to my own standards and experiencing life on my terms.

When I stopped worrying needlessly about what people thought, I set myself free from the chains of fear and anxiety and was no longer a slave to others’ opinions and approval. I no longer felt the need to walk on eggshells and hide my natural humanness. I stopped feeling like I wasn’t good enough and comparing myself to others. I no longer allowed anyone else to dictate what I should say, do, think, or feel.

I began permitting myself to make mistakes because we all make them whether or not some of us admit it. Even better, I started learning from those mistakes and seeing them as life lessons, rather than defects or screw-ups. I finally accepted that I’m not and never will be perfect. Who is?

Silhouettes of hands are breaking the chain—freedom concept.

I learned that like, and dislike is subjective, never personal. I accepted that not everybody was going to like me and was not only okay with it but embraced it! Because if you don’t have people who don’t like you, you’re not doing something right- in one area or another, you’re not your true, authentic self.

I permitted myself to follow my heart, sing, dance, speak my piece, and yes! Even be a little weird. In all this, I took back control of my life and found freedom I’d never known.

The day I stopped caring what people think was the day I got my life back, and slowly but surely, my bullies began to disappear. I began to feel beautiful, smart, and, best of all, equal.

Positive things started coming my way magically and seemingly without effort. I began attracting the right people into my life- genuine people who were loving, caring, uplifting, and inspiring. Existing relationships drastically improved. An abundance of opportunities and blessings flowed into my life. I began seeing wins and successes that were very rewarding and fulfilling, which only encouraged me to stretch my imagination, take more risks, and try new things.

Today, I look back and ask myself why. Why did I even give a crap what my bullies and others- people who meant absolutely jack to me and could do nothing for me, thought of me?

They weren’t my family or friends.
They didn’t pay my bills.
They didn’t sign my paycheck every week.
They didn’t hold my life in their hands.
And they most certainly weren’t people I cared anything about.

I wasted a lot of time and energy, which I can never get back, worrying needlessly about what people thought of me. The truth of it is that most of those people nor their opinions were never even worth my consideration.

The only opinions that matter are those of my God, my family, my husband, and my closest and most trusted friends. And the only things that matter are my faith in God, my dreams, my morals, taking care of the people I love, my ability to be the best me I can be, and my desire to extend kindness and reach out and help those who need me. Anyone or anything outside of that is irrelevant.

I Don’t Wish I’d Been More Popular, I Wish I Had Loved and Respected Myself More

I wish I had put myself first.

I wish I’d said “NO” a lot more than I did.

I wish I had been true to my own heart.

And I wish I had known my worth and realized my full potential.

In a nutshell, I wish I had been better at being me. But we all wish we’d done these things when we get older, don’t we? That we’d done something a little different- a bit better?

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve grown a very thick skin and learned to handle any confrontation with composure and aplomb. As we get older, we shed that shell we curled up and hid in when we were younger. We grow to love and accept ourselves as we are and become comfortable in our own skins and let me tell you! It’s immense freedom that you can’t describe!

I’ve learned that the reason people bully is not because of something the victim has said or done and that it is not the fault of the victim.

The reason bullies bully is because they have issues, whether it be a bad case of narcissism, low self-esteem, problems at home, jealousy of something the victims have that they don’t, or they have something to prove. I’ve learned that bullies, at their very core, are great big cowards and attention-seekers. That knowledge alone is freeing!

Just knowing why unsavory people do harm only serves as a huge buffer to any psycho/emotional blows.

Today, I no longer get bullied by anyone, but if anyone tries, I am easily able to swiftly put the person in their place, or laugh and blow the idiot off. Instead of getting hurt or angry, I get amused by them and am usually able to have fun with it.

Unfortunately, that takes time, learning, and most of all experience. I feel a sense of regret when I think of all the years I spent feeling insecure and sorry for myself. What a total waste of my time and energy!

You mustn’t take anything your bullies say as the truth. You must know that their actions or words have nothing to do with you and everything to do with them! Hey! I know it’s hard not to, and I know it hurts. I know it’s hard not to blame yourself when it seems that everyone, from every direction, is bombarding you with negativity.

However, I want you to love yourself and see the bullies for who they truly are- pathetic souls who are so desperately trying to look tough, smart, or cool. I want you to understand that bullies are trying their hardest to get attention. You must know your value. You also need to realize that some people are just wrong for you and do not belong in your life!

Most of all, rest assured that you will eventually find people who are right for you. And when you do, they will love you for being your loveable, beautiful, intelligent, and awesome self! There will come a day when you will be loved, appreciated, and celebrated for all that you are!

It happened to me, and if you don’t give up, it will happen to you too! You are worth fighting for! You are worth living for!

Countering Your Bullies’ Attacks

That means maintaining a healthy and positive sense of self.

It means refusing to take in and accept your bullies’ assaults on your pride and dignity, no matter how powerful or influential they may seem. After all, they’re only people just like you.

Countering the attacks from a bully means being able to withstand the barrage of attacks or your humanity, personhood, and character.

It means not letting your bullies persuade you into thinking that they know you better than you know yourself.

It means being super-self-aware- so much so that you know beyond a shadow of a doubt who you are and that you’re a great person who doesn’t deserve shabby treatment.

It means having a clear vision of your value as a human being.

It means keeping company only with strong people who are positive influences in your life- people who consistently validate and affirm your positive qualities and the good you bring to the lives of others and this world.

Then, when a bully tells you that you’re ugly, stupid, evil, or crazy, you can stand with confidence and say, “No, I’m not. You are,” and walk away with more pride in yourself because you stood up to bullies.

Many targets fall for the garbage bullies feed them because there’s more to countering the attacks than words or fists. It takes mind and spirit power just as well. Most targets, sad to say, are either insecure in themselves, to begin with, or, over time, bullies succeed in making them that way.

They may do like I did in the earliest stages of bullying- “ignore the attacks without responding or fighting back. And we know how that usually ends.

Maintaining mind power and a healthy sense of self is the very foundation of self-defense and protection. Always remember that.

Your mind and your thoughts are free! Keep them that way!

You Can Overcome Shyness

Many targets of bullying, after people bully them so severely for so long, become painfully shy. I did. So, I understand entirely.

When a target has personal attacks hurled at them from every direction, and others scrutinize everything they say and do down to the tiniest detail, it’s easy for that person to withdraw, shut out the rest of humanity, and hide in plain sight. It seems to be the safest thing to do.

However, it’s a terrible way to live. Shyness is like a prison without walls. It stops you from being your true, authentic self, and you end up missing out on so much. Shyness keeps you from having fun and enjoying life.

When you’re shy, you don’t properly connect with others because you’re too busy thinking about yourself rather than others.

There. I said it.

You’re too busy thinking instead of connecting- thinking of what to say next, wondering what others are thinking of you and of how they can benefit you, and self-conscious of how you’re coming across. You’re too busy thinking about you!

But what if I said that there was a way to get rid of shyness? What if I told you there’s one- just one ingredient?

It’s true! Are you ready for it? Here it is.

How you get rid of shyness is to take the focus off yourself and become interested in others. And when you do that, you put yourself out there and take risks.

That’s it.

As Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “No one can make you feel inferior without your permission.” How right she was.

When you’re so shy that you can’t bear social situations, it’s a sign that you’ve already given your power over to other people. Not good! You owe it to yourself to take that power back.

It won’t be easy. It may feel awkward at first. But put yourself out there and take risks. Greet people- even total strangers, with a smile and a “Hi. How are you?” You’ll be surprised at the positive outcomes you get and how your confidence begins to soar.

I know what some of you are thinking.

motivational inspirational

“What if they reject me?”

Rejection is a part of life. You just have to deal with that. Better yet, embrace it. It’s a risk you must take. Life is full of risks.

But if you don’t take risks, you don’t really live, you only exist.

Realize that human beings love it when you’re genuinely interested in them. Let them tell you about themselves and listen not only with your ears and eyes but with your whole heart. Do it long enough, and soon, it will no longer feel awkward. You won’t even need to think about it. It will feel like second nature.

Only when you develop a genuine interest in other people will your shyness disappear. The key is to focus outside yourself.

So, get out there and schmooze it up! I guarantee that you’ll be pleasantly surprised not only at the results you get but how confident you feel!

With knowledge comes empowerment!