The Problem with Looking Outside of Yourself for Your Value

Bullying is hurtful no matter how confident you are, that much is true. We’re all human and we all have feelings and emotions. However, the effects of it are even more damaging when we’re insecure and only look outside of ourselves for our value, in fact, the damage to the self-esteem is exponentially higher.

The problem is that when you look outside of yourself for your value, you automatically look to others to give it to you. And when you do this, you put yourself at their mercy.

Therefore, I have repeatedly emphasized over six years of blogging that knowing your worth is your foundation and that it’s never good to look outside of ourselves for it. Understand that your value, or worth, whatever term you prefer, comes from within and never from without.

Here’s why it’s better to let your value come from the inside:’

1. You can never control the environment around you. Many times, we will find ourselves in toxic environments full of poisonous people, whether it be the school we attend, the company we work for, or the home or neighborhood we live in. When you know yourself and, in that, know your value and let it come from the inside, any bullying or abuse you’re likely to get from others won’t have such an impact on you.

It will hurt, yes. But it won’t be nearly as devastating and cause you to suppress as much of yourself because, deep down, you’ll know who you are and that the people around you are only saying the things they say to diminish you.

Also, when the crap gets too thick, you’ll know when it’s time to bail out of the environment. In knowing yourself and knowing your worth, you’ll realize that you don’t deserve this kind of treatment and that you’re better off leaving this cesspit and moving on to greener pastures.

And you’ll do it without feeling guilty- you’ll do it knowing that it isn’t because you’re “chicken” or “running away from your problems” but because you deserve better. You’ll know what’s best for you, and that it’s because you’re looking out for the best interests of your health.

2. You can never control others’ behavior and how they think of you. And because of this, it’s never good to rely on the approval of others for your value. Understand that there will always be people who don’t like you and some who even hate you and when you depend solely on the approval of others, you make yourself a doormat. Please, for your own sake and the sake of your mental health, don’t give another person that kind of power!

When your value comes from within, you will have respect for yourself, you will love yourself and you will have great self-esteem. You will give yourself compassion and care when others take pot shots at you. You will have the confidence and courage to protect yourself and stand up to abuse. You will know without a shadow of a doubt that the idiots around you are the ones who have the issues and not you.

Your value should always from you. Never from another. You get your value from knowing who you are and knowing that you were put on this earth for a good reason. Realize that everyone serves a good and higher purpose here. You may or may not know what that purpose is, but you are here for a purpose. Find that purpose and fulfill it. And know your value!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

What It Means to Counter Your Bullies’ Attacks

It 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 them.

Many targets fall for the garbage bullies feed them because there’s more to countering the attacks than words or fists. It also takes mind and spirit power.

Most targets, sad to say, are either insecure in themselves, to begin with or became so over time because bullies succeeded 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!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Here’s What Bullies Want You to Believe v/s What You Should Believe

Understand that bullies thrive on power and control. If they can’t control you, they’ll control how others view you. They’ll also use redundancy and repetition to make you believe their lies too. Here’s what they’re most likely to try and get you to think of yourself and what you should believe:

1.What bullies want you to believe

Apart from us, you can do nothing, you are nothing, and you never will be.

What you should believe

Apart from you, I’m better off. I can do anything I set my mind to do, I’m somebody, and later down the line, I’m going to be great and do great things.

2. What bullies want you to believe

You’ll never find happiness without our permission.

What you should believe

I don’t need your permission to be happy. I’m much happier without a bunch of losers in my life.

3. What bullies want you to believe

Nobody will ever like or love you.

What you should believe

Maybe you never will, but I don’t mind because you don’t matter. There will be others who’ll love me for me. I’ll find my tribe.

4. What bullies want you to believe

You’re nothing without our approval.

What you should believe

I’m nothing with it because you are nothing. I don’t need your “approval” because it will never define me. Your opinion matters not because, for something to matter, you must first value it.

Always counter the statements, including the unspoken ones. You’ll be surprised at what it will do for your self-esteem and your spirit!

“Who Do You Think You Are!”

Have you ever had people seemingly mistake your confidence for conceit? Or worse, get offended by it? And you knew it but never understood why? Heaven forbid you actually have even a minuscule amount of self-esteem and take pride in your accomplishments.

Sadly, we live in a world that’s insecure, self-conscious, and unhappy and there will be people who resent your spirit and your happiness. There are environments that are very toxic and the toxic people within them have an intense hatred of those who are cheerful and have a strong sense of self.

Bullies are such people. But realize that, though they’d tell you differently, bullies aren’t happy people. They can’t be because anyone who’s truly happy wouldn’t try to make others feel lousy.

Moreover, they wouldn’t resent the happiness, confidence, or successes of others.

I’ve dealt with these types of people- people who resented my confidence, which was confidence that I’d worked hard to rebuild. I saw it written all over their faces- the scowls, how their eyes would narrow and turn into slits and brows would furrow anytime they saw a smile on mine or anyone else’s face. I can just imagine what they were thinking: “The nerve!”

I’ve even heard the disdainful remarks:

“She thinks too highly of herself and needs to be brought down a notch or two!”

“He’s an arrogant jerk!”

“She’s so uppity!”

“He loves himself too much!”

“She needs to bring herself down to earth with the rest of us!”

I could go on and on.

Many people act as if being confident and loving yourself is wrong. The message you get is that it’s “selfish,” and that you need to climb down off your high horse, or you’re too big for your britches. They try to make you think that having pride in yourself is something to be ashamed of. ”How dehhhhh you!”

Bullies tend to think that if a person has confidence and high self-esteem, he is pompous and sanctimonious- he’s the worst person in the world. In their minds, it’s horrible to have even a modicum of self-value and to believe in yourself. “Who do you think you are!”

As much as I hate to admit it, back when I was young and had self-esteem issues, I said the same thing about the same people. And do you know what else? I’ve since realized that I was wrong for it and that it was said out of pure stupidity.

So, I want you to know that, if you have the audacity to like yourself, there will be those who’ll try to tear you down for it. They will attempt to make you feel ashamed of it. Some will even punish you for it. But realize that these people aren’t happy, nor confident and they’re jealous of you because you are. Your bullies and others are bitter toward you because you have something they don’t have. And because they think they can’t have it, they want to take it from the people who do.

So, go for it! Be happy! Be confident! Believe in and love yourself! Treat yourself well whether anyone else likes it! And never let them take it away!

Don’t worry about the people around you. Know that how they act says nothing about you but everything about them. Their actions only expose them as the miserable, sorry pieces of crap they are. So, dig in those heels and double down on your positive sense of self.

Do everything you can to hold on to your joy and self-belief, and let the haters stew in their own juices.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

22 Good Responses to Bullying

It takes knowing bullying behavior when you see it and setting boundaries. We should respond (not react) to it right away and with conviction. And when you respond, you must respond with commands, not questions. What I mean by my last sentence is that instead of asking, “What did I ever do to you,” say, “Stop!” or “Knock it off!”

Because anytime we respond to bullies with questions, it only re-enforces their behavior.

Here are a few responses to different types of bullying:

The silent treatment

Return the silent treatment

Pull out a book and read it.

Walk away.

Put in earbuds and listen to music.

 

Verbal Abuse and Bullying

Firmly and authoritatively say,

“Stop that!”

“Cut it out!”

And put your hand out like a traffic cop.

Bullying disguised as jokes

“Knock it off!”

“Don’t be a moron!”

“Cut it out!”

 

A bully who judges you or criticizes

“Shut up!”

“Mind your own business!”

“Nobody asked you!”

“That’s enough!”

Responses to Trivialization

“I’m not having this conversation with you.”

“I’ve heard all I want to hear from you.”

 

When bullies undermine you

“Knock it off!”

“I’m not having this discussion with you!”

Defending their rights concept. Silhouette of hands pointing, denouncing the hand that defends their rights

When bullies threaten you

“Stop threatening me!”

“Leave me alone!”

“I don’t want to hear it!”

“Get away from me!”

 

When bullies make demands or give you orders

“I don’t respond to demands.”

“I don’t take orders.”

These are just a few good responses to the different types of bullying. Remember that you have a right to be treated well and you don’t have to take abuse from anyone.

28 Affirmations That Help Boost Confidence and Self-Esteem

I love being me – positive affirmation – handwriting on napkin with a cup of coffee

Affirmations That Help Boost Confidence and Self-Esteem

NOTE: Parts of this blog post references the following:

(“Stopping Wife Abuse,” Jennifer Baker Flaming, 1979, p.64)

(“The Verbally Abusive Relationship,” Patricia Evans, 2010, p.149)

1.I am not to blame for being bullied.

2. I am not the cause of someone else’s abhorrent behavior.

3. I deserve to be free from bullying and abuse.

4. It is okay for me to say “no” to what I don’t like nor want.

5. I do not have to take it.

6. I am important.

7. I am worthwhile.

8. I deserve to be treated with respect.

9. I have the power to create a good life for myself.

10. It’s okay for me to take care of myself.

11. Only I can decide what’s best for me.

12. I’m not alone. I have people who love me.

13. I am worth fighting for.

14. I deserve to be safe.

15. I deserve to be happy.

16. I am beautiful.

17. I am smart.

18. I am a good person.

19. I can live my life the way I want and on my terms.

20. I am loved.

21. It’s okay to love myself.

22. It’s okay to celebrate myself.

23. It’s okay for me to make mistakes.

24. It’s okay to put myself first.

25. It’s okay to protect and defend myself.

26. It’s okay to ask for help.

27. My life matters.

28. I matter.

7 Ways to Make Yourself Less a Target

Before we begin, I want to assure you that the bullying you suffer isn’t your fault. There’s nothing wrong with you, nor did you do anything to bring it on yourself. So, if you feel the title of this post has undertones of victim-blaming, please be assured that you’re not to blame. However, what it does say is that you’re not entirely powerless, which is excellent news! There are ways you can lessen the bullying and make yourself more charismatic.

Here’s what you can do:

1. Practice modesty. Targets of bullying will sometimes incessantly talk themselves up. I completely understand why they do this. When people are always putting you down, sometimes your first instinct is to build yourself back up and make yourself feel better and soothe your battered self-esteem. And understand that sometimes, you have to do this to feel better. However, doing this can make you a bigger target if you aren’t careful.

Never talk about yourself too much, and never try to bring too much attention to what you do. Nobody likes a braggart. And the more you talk about what you’re doing; the more suspicious of you people will be. Even worse, you’ll become a target of backstabbers and people who are jealous! Never toot your own horn. Be modest. Make it about others, not yourself.

2. It’s better to be nonchalant. Make everything you do look effortless.

3. Don’t pour on the flattery. Sometimes, targets of bullying will use excessive flattery to get in their bullies’ good graces, and it never works. I tried it when I was a kid to trick my bullies into leaving me alone. It only backfired. Too much flattery can make things worse because it makes you look like a suck-up. Or, your bullies might think you’re trying to run a con game on them, which will only get them angrier because they take it as your believing they’re stupid. Keep the flattery to a minimum, and for the love of Pete, don’t attempt to flatter the wrong people!

4. Get noticed. But don’t overdo it with being flashy or flamboyant. Sadly, targets of bullying will do anything, and I mean anything to be seen. I can understand because no one wants to be made invisible. But being gaudy will only make you a bigger target, and the last thing you need is to draw even more negative attention to yourself. Subtly create a style all your own.

5. Alter yourself to the people you’re around. But never too much. Keep enough style of your own so you don’t come off as a copy-cat. When you’re a victim of bullying, the last thing you need is for others to brand you a fake.

6. Bring good news. Keep any bad news to a minimum because people will shoot messengers of negativity. And if you’re a target of bullying, people already associate you with enough negativity. Why not shock a few people by bringing positivity?

7. Never criticize. Especially the wrong people. Being critical of others can make you seem like a drama king or queen and can escalate the bullying you suffer.

Doing the above things may not make the bullying stop entirely, but it can dial it down a notch or two. And the less of a target you are, the better!

You Can be Dangerous to Your Bullies If You Know How

Having a moral compass and a strong sense of self is a huge threat to bullies. Why? Because those are things they don’t have. Bullies know that anyone with these qualities will see right through them and, even worse, blow the lid off the dirty secrets they try to hide.

Such a person is also a threat to the bullies’ popularity and social status. Anyone who has a moral compass and a strong sense of self is also more likely to be trusted and well-liked by others. They outshine bullies and make them look (and feel) like the losers they are. And they do it without trying! They do it simply by being their natural selves.

Should it be any wonder that these people attract so much hatred from bullies? Is it at all surprising that they have so many insecure people who try to tear them down?

Know that if you’re a target of such vile behavior, it isn’t because there’s anything wrong with you. It’s because there’s something right with you!

So, hold on to that!

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!