The Reason It Pays to Know Yourself

When you know yourself inside and out, you are better able to define yourself instead of letting others, particularly bullies and abusers, do it for you. And when you learn to accept only your definition of who you are, you can more easily avoid bullying because you’re better able to recognize it. And when you’re able to identify abuse, you’re least likely to put up with it.

In other words, when you know who you are, you also know what you want and what you will and will not tolerate, which is why knowing who you are is of the utmost importance.

Knowing yourself means knowing your feelings, senses, and instincts and trusting them to guide you through this crazy thing called life. Tuning in to your feelings and instincts means tuning into your gut. As we all know, your gut can guide you out of dangerous situations and environments if you allow it to.

Knowing yourself also means refusing to allow bullies to shame or ridicule you into staying in situations and circumstances that don’t feel good to you or around toxic people. To know yourself means to trust yourself to make the right decisions.

For example, during the years my classmates bullied me, there were times when they would accost me, and I’d put my hand up to them and walk away. I didn’t have time for their drama and foolishness. Next, one of them would shout, “Hey! Where are you going, you big chicken!” or “Oh, that’s right! Walk away like you always do!” or “You’d better run!”

Understand that when you turn your back and walk away from a bully and he calls out these things to you, it’s only their attempts to control you by defining you- to shame you into sticking around and taking their crap. Or, it could be that they’re trying to bait you into a fight because they know the chances are that you’ll get blamed for it.

No one wants others to think them to be a coward. But people will try to define you as one to corner you and trick you into doing what they want. They know that you’ll feel compelled to hang around and you’ll do it for no other reason than to prove to the rest of the world that you aren’t afraid.

Again, this is why you must know yourself. When you know deep down that you’re not what people call you, you won’t feel any need to do any posturing nor virtue signaling because you won’t have to prove anything. Although the name-calling may sting a little, it won’t bother you as much.

Another good thing about knowing yourself is that you won’t feel the need to hold back emotions. You’ll be able to recognize them better and allow yourself to feel them. You won’t let others tell you how you should feel or bullies to shame you into suppressing them.

You don’t have to put on a big front and try to act like someone you’re not.

To know yourself means freedom!

Understand that people who don’t know themselves will follow the crowd and try to fit in. People who don’t know themselves will accept other’s definitions of them without realizing it. They’ll build a fake identity based on how others view them and others’ expectations and ideas of who a real person should be.

Sadly, if a target is told by abusers that he’s stupid, no good, lazy and that he’ll never amount to anything, in many cases, they’ll live up to it. It will show up in their grades, performance, and how they interact with people.

During school, I lost knowledge of who I was only for a little while, and that was before the suicide attempt. Later, I become angry at myself for allowing them to define me.

It was later when I decided that I was going to be true to my own heart. It may not have looked that way to the outside observer. Still, inside, I got in touch with my inner sensations and instincts and began to realize that I wasn’t to blame for what was happening to me. I realized that their abuse was no reflection on me but spoke volumes about their lack of morals, decency, and character.

Getting to know myself brought confirmation that what they were doing was wrong. Now this inner realization didn’t stop me from being bullied and may have made it worse. But instead of hating and blaming myself, I listened to what my gut told me. I paid close attention to the vibes I was getting and maintained a strong sense of self while enduring the pain of not being accepted.

I decided from then on that I was going to maintain my inner strength. I would listen to my instincts when they told me that I had reason to fear certain people. Even better, I was no longer going to be ashamed of it. I began paying attention to how my body tensed up when I was around certain people and realized that it was only a cue for me to get away from those people.

And today, I trust myself enough to reject others’ definitions of who I am. In that, bullies are no longer able to have power over me, and I’m a much happier person for it.

And I want you to know that you too can get to that beautiful and peaceful place.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

17 Characteristics of The Adult Survivor of School Bullying

Being a victim of school bullying often teaches us tough lessons- lessons that we carry into adulthood, shaping our personalities, and the ways we do things once we are out of school and away from our tormentors. Being an adult survivor myself, I can tell you what I took from it:

1. Having been bullied during school sharpened my emotional and social intelligence – Because we learned very early on how truly evil people can be, we know how to watch people without looking like we’re watching them, noting body language, facial expressions, micro-expressions, tonality, delivery, and demeanor. Because our people-sense wasn’t fully developed during our school years, we often let those in our lives who were only there to harm us. We paid dearly for it, which is the reason we’re extra watchful and therefore able to avoid such people, now that we’re adults.

2. We’re not afraid to say “no” and will sometimes say it simply because we can! As schoolkids, we had our boundaries violated so much so that we weren’t allowed to protest when something didn’t feel right to us.

People either duped or forced us to take a lot of abuse. Now that we’re adults, we get to decide what we will and will not tolerate and we exercise that freedom and autonomy every chance we get!

3. Survivors of school bullying are no-nonsense adults. We’ve learned early on the games people play, and we’re not easily duped. We live by the old, “fool me once…” saying and hold it close to our hearts.

positive bullied victim says NO

4. We have a very open and solid refusal to take any crap from anyone, no matter the consequences we may face for that refusal. I’m no exception. We took enough crap in school from our classmates and a few rotten apples, who called themselves school staff that we’re even more determined as adults not to let others violate our boundaries.

5. We don’t give people many chances. To us, first impressions are important, so you’d better make it count.

One red flag, I’m gone!
One bad vibe, goodbye!
Any attempts to bullshit, see ya!

This is due to having been too forgiving of others when we were young, being taken for granted, having our kindness taken for weakness, and then exploited, much to our humiliation. And we refuse ever again to be put back in that position.

6. We work our asses off! We’re tenacious when it comes to getting what we want and will stop at almost nothing to reach success – we had enough of what we didn’t want when we were in school. Others called us “a failure” so many times that it lit a fire under us and made us that much more determined to succeed at everything we set out to do, if for no other reason than to show the haters and naysayers (even our ex-school bullies) that we can! Show them up and shut them up is another motto.

7. We like having control over our own lives and will do anything to keep that control – survivors of school bullying had enough of others taking control of their lives long ago, and we will shut down the first person who tries to take away our power.

8. We can spot a bully five miles away in the dark – Yes! We’re that good! We dealt with bullies in school, for years, daily. We know the signs by heart. So naturally, we would be good, nearly expert, at pointing them out.

survivors x-ray eyes

9. As adults, we either avoid bullies like the plague, or, on the other end of the spectrum, we take extreme pleasure in putting bullies in their places, calling them out every chance we get, and making them feel like the losers they are – remembering all the times we didn’t or couldn’t defend ourselves against them in school.

10. We have a thick skin that has become difficult for others, other than those close to us, to penetrate. That’s our power. We like being unpredictable and keeping others on their toes to try and figure us out.

11. We can’t stand to watch others being made fun of and will rush to their defense. We’re not afraid to get nose to nose with the bully if need be- not only to help the person being bullied but subconsciously, to make up for all the times we felt helpless and didn’t or couldn’t defend ourselves against our bullies in school.

12. We can smell horseshit like a bloodhound. If someone tries to feed us a load of hogwash, we know it instantly and instinctively. We see it as an insult to our intelligence and we get highly PO’ed because we know the lying person must think we’re too stupid to figure them out. And we won’t hesitate to call the person out!

13. Adult survivors of school bullying are sensitive to the emotions of others and cannot stand the thought of causing emotional or physical harm to another person, but only if that person isn’t trying to harm them first.

14. Adult survivors of bullying place extra value on their families and friends. We’re careful that we don’t take them for granted- we know what it’s like to be completely alone and not to have any friends. Therefore, we cherish family/friends and time spent with them.

15. Adult survivors of school bullying are, in some ways, selfish. I know I am. We put a lot of value on ourselves, our wants, our needs, and our interests- all because others didn’t value us as kids during school.

So, we make it a point to put ourselves first in almost everything. Our children and parents may be the only people we put ahead of us.

16. Words don’t convince us. Only actions and patterns do. Due to our past histories of being duped by the empty promises and cheap words of school bullies and paying dearly for it. We’ll be damned if we ever repeat that mistake.

17. We live by our instincts- our gut feelings, sixth sense, whatever you choose to call it. Even better, we trust them because we paid a heavy price for ignoring them. we now have a sixth sense. Adult survivors of school bullying are excellent at picking up vibes (especially bad ones) and reading people and their intentions. If something or someone doesn’t feel right, we won’t hesitate to either walk away or tell the suspicious person to take a long walk off a short pier.

Being bullied as a kid in school has not only made me a powerful adult; it has also exponentially sharpened my people-senses, which in turn has afforded me not only scores of friends who love and respect me, successes, and even more opportunities, but ultimately, an enriching life!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Why It Pays to Know Thyself

When you know yourself inside and out, you are better able to define yourself instead of letting others, particularly bullies and abusers, do it for you. And when you learn to accept only your definition of who you are, you can more easily avoid bullying because you’re better able to recognize it. And when you’re able to identify abuse, you’re least likely to put up with it.

In other words, when you know who you are, you also know what you want and what you will and will not tolerate, which is why knowing who you are is of the utmost importance.

Knowing yourself means knowing your feelings, senses, and instincts and trusting them to guide you through this crazy thing called life. Tuning in to your feelings and instincts means tuning into your gut. As we all know, your gut can guide you out of dangerous situations and environments if you allow it to.

Knowing yourself also means refusing to allow bullies to shame or ridicule you into staying in situations and circumstances that don’t feel good to you or around toxic people. To know yourself means to trust yourself to make the right decisions.

For example, during the years my classmates bullied me, there were times when they would accost me, and I’d put my hand up to them and walk away. I didn’t have time for their drama and foolishness. Next, one of them would shout, “Hey! Where are you going, you big chicken!” or “Oh, that’s right! Walk away like you always do!” or “You’d better run!”

Understand that when you turn your back and walk away from a bully and he calls out these things to you, it’s only their attempts to control you by defining you- to shame you into sticking around and taking their crap. Or, it could be that they’re trying to bait you into a fight because they know the chances are that you’ll get blamed for it.

No one wants others to think them to be a coward. But people will try to define you as one to corner you and trick you into doing what they want. They know that you’ll feel compelled to hang around and you’ll do it for no other reason than to prove to the rest of the world that you aren’t afraid.

Again, this is why you must know yourself. When you know deep down that you’re not what people call you, you won’t feel any need to do any posturing nor virtue signaling because you won’t have to prove anything. Although the name-calling may sting a little, it won’t bother you as much.

Another good thing about knowing yourself is that you won’t feel the need to hold back emotions. You’ll be able to recognize them better and allow yourself to feel them. You won’t let others tell you how you should feel or bullies to shame you into suppressing them.

You don’t have to put on a big front and try to act like someone you’re not.

To know yourself means freedom!

Understand that people who don’t know themselves will follow the crowd and try to fit in. People who don’t know themselves will accept other’s definitions of them without realizing it. They’ll build a fake identity based on how others view them and others’ expectations and ideas of who a real person should be.

Sadly, if a target is told by abusers that he’s stupid, no good, lazy and that he’ll never amount to anything, in many cases, they’ll live up to it. It will show up in their grades, performance, and how they interact with people.

During school, I lost knowledge of who I was only for a little while, and that was before the suicide attempt. Later, I become angry at myself for allowing them to define me.

It was later when I decided that I was going to be true to my own heart. It may not have looked that way to the outside observer. Still, inside, I got in touch with my inner sensations and instincts and began to realize that I wasn’t to blame for what was happening to me. I realized that their abuse was no reflection on me but spoke volumes about their lack of morals, decency, and character.

Getting to know myself brought confirmation that what they were doing was wrong. Now this inner realization didn’t stop me from being bullied and may have made it worse. But instead of hating and blaming myself, I listened to what my gut told me. I paid close attention to the vibes I was getting and maintained a strong sense of self while enduring the pain of not being accepted.

I decided from then on that I was going to maintain my inner strength. I would listen to my instincts when they told me that I had reason to fear certain people. Even better, I was no longer going to be ashamed of it. I began paying attention to how my body tensed up when I was around certain people and realized that it was only a cue for me to get away from those people.

And today, I trust myself enough to reject others’ definitions of who I am. In that, bullies are no longer able to have power over me, and I’m a much happier person for it.

And I want you to know that you too can get to that beautiful and peaceful place.