Last week I read an article by Marlo Thomas on the Huffington Post website where she talked about the bullying problem we face in our society.
She talked about the need for bystanders to take more action as well as for parents to talk to their kids more so they can recognize when their child if their child is being bullied. This is good advice, even if it was advice I’d heard before.
There were a couple hundred comments to her article as well. General themes of the comments were around how bad the problem is, stories of personal bullying experiences, and how kids should fight back physically to stop the bully in his/her tracks.
A couple of thoughts went through my mind as I read all of the comments, and finally I just had to stop reading. Two ideas became really clear to me (and from what I read, no one was stating these ideas):
1) Bullying, or any problem for that matter, does not go away by talking about how bad it is.
What we focus on, grows. It is the inherent nature of life in all its forms to grow. When you speak about how bad things are, you are actually speaking life into those things. You are helping them to persist and grow.
It doesn’t matter if it is growing something positive or something negative, put it out there and it grows.
What we’ve learned from the war on terrorists, the war on drugs, the war on anything, is that when you wage war on something, you only make it bigger, not smaller.
2) Dealing with circumstances after the fact, like what a bystander should do, or what the bullied person should do, is great, and necessary, but it doesn’t solve the root cause of the problem.
Creating a world where a child no longer feels unworthy or feels disempowered (aka, feels like a victim) would.
Did you know we could actually eliminate bullying, both the bullies and the victims of bullying in one generation if we all raised our kids with a healthy level of self-worth, self-acceptance, and self-empowerment?
Sadly, we don’t learn how to do this as parents!
And even sadder, many parents suffer from low self-esteem themselves. If you don’t have healthy self-esteem, it is hard to pass it along to your kids.
I’m not saying we shouldn’t empower bystanders of bullying to speak up. This is a great short-term solution. But for every bystander who speaks up, another child is getting bullied somewhere else.
When children feel strong and accepting of themselves on the inside, they emanate these feelings outward.
It is challenging for a bully to take advantage of someone who feels strong on the inside, and they likely won’t try long before looking for an easier target.
So how do we help our kids to feel this strength and self-acceptance on the inside?
A first step is to heal our own lack of self-worth and empowerment, and then learn how to grow the self-worth of our children.
These positive steps will have a tremendous impact on our kids, their friends, colleagues at work, neighbors, our community, etc.
No one person is going to be able to solve this problem alone. But, one person can create a ripple effect through their own positive actions and choices to impact all those they come into contact with.
If you wish to take a step toward healing your own issues of low self-esteem, or learn techniques you can use with your kids, then please check out my Child Self-Esteem Bully-Proof Home Study Program.
I am offering this program at 50% off the regular price for the remainder of October, which is Bully Awareness Month.
In 4 easy audio sessions, this program will guide you through your own self-exploration of negative beliefs that may be limiting you, and then expand into the strategies and mindset you can use to improve both your own self-esteem and that of your kids.
I rarely offer this program at this low a price. To receive the program at 50% off, just use the Coupon Code “bullyproof” at check out.
Whether you choose to take steps to improve the bullying situation by using my program or you get help elsewhere doesn’t really matter. The important thing is that we start somewhere, seek out support where necessary, and start creating empowerment and self-acceptance from within, first helping ourselves, and then ultimately, our kids.