There are many four letter words in the English vocabulary that are bad, but there is one five-letter word that is worse. B-U-L-L-Y.
It’s a word that keeps appearing in my life in different ways so it must be here to teach us something. In today’s post, I am exploring (as I write), what that could be.
In reading about the presidential campaign, it was mentioned that Hillary Clinton was bullied as a kid and learned from her mother that, “You have to face things and show them you’re not afraid.”
Many celebrities—Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Chris Rock, Jennifer Lawrence, Lady Gaga, Jessica Alba (and unfortunately, the list goes on and on)—were bullied, teased, ridiculed, etc. I do not know all of their personal stories, but clearly, they rose above their early struggles and channeled that energy to make themselves stronger, more confident and tremendously successful.
It’s a topic in schools and on playgrounds around the country and beyond.
But, sadly, its not something that people always outgrow. For a long time, I thought when kids were mean, it was just because they were deficient in something for themselves (love, attention, validation, appreciation, etc.) As a result of some void, they lashed out. It’s not that their core was bad; it was their young minds’ way of trying to make themselves feel better (by hurting someone else more). We know that never works though.
As one gets older, we hopefully develop empathy, do more right than wrong, and work on improving. We cannot beat ourselves up for our mistakes or misfortunes, we can only move forward and try to do better the next time. Yet, despite the maturation process that I expect develops with age, I still see adults behaving poorly, like playground bullies in their own way. So, how is a child expected to do better if there is no better example leading the way?
This is how: CHANGE. Use each day to find change or be the change.
- Think of being the person you want your child to marry.
- Dig deep and learn to forgive. Resentment breeds only sorrow. If you want a joyful life, as hard as it might be, you must rise above and take the higher ground.
- Rally the positive people around you and outnumber the negativity.
- Be courageous, call out bad behavior and stand up for the underdog.
- Be bold. Be strong. Be confident. Things take time, but good ALWAYS prevails.
- Communicate with respect and a sense of dignity.
- Know that you may try, fail, try again, fail, but…Never. Give. Up. You can always take a pause, let things cool off, but never compromise on your standards.
- Let people in to help. A good conversation with someone who really cares can make all the difference.
- There is someone out there–they may just be in unexpected places– so never judge a book by its cover.
- At the end of the day, control what you can control—YOU.
If we let the five letters (B-U-L-L-Y) take over, then we will inevitably revert to many four-lettered words…so…
Keep it clean.
Keep it real.
Keep it positive.
And, create the life you want for yourself and the world around you.
Moment by moment
Day by day
Week by week
Start small and big things will happen.