imconfident

I sincerely believe that it is far more beneficial and far less costly to help a child build confidence than it is to fix an adult who has little or none.

Troubles

Do you ever feel like this picture – that everyone and everything in life is against you? Some of us feel that life is always beating us up and rightly so. The world is a negative place and people are naturally negative and self-centered – we are born this way. Unless we are taught to be positive, kind and caring, we will grow up to be adults who look at life with a negative perspective, have a bad attitude and treat ourselves and other people with disrespect. When we have been hurt, abused, ignored or treated badly we will treat other people in the same way because we don’t know anything different. Hurting people hurt people. So we end up like this pictures. We are being hurt or we are hurting others. If we want to stop this from happening, we have to develop a positive attitude and strong esteem so we can deal with situations in a positive way and not allow people to hurt or disrespect us. Let’s all do our part to be nice to each other and ourselves by being kind and showing love. Hurting each other is wrong and nobody wins.

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You are unique and valuable

adult and teenWhen we have problems in life, we often feel alone and think that we are the only one who is being hurt.   We think that:

  • nobody likes us
  • nobody cares about us
  • nobody understands what we are going through
  • nobody else hurts as much as we do
  • nobody else makes more mistakes than we do
  • nobody else is a bigger failure than we are

Does this sound familiar?  I’ve certainly felt all those things but the truth is, everyone in this world has problems and we are not alone in our pain.  We all make mistakes and this does not mean that we are failures.  Sometimes people will hurt us, but we have to realize that we are unique and valuable individuals and that we should not allow anyone to hurt us.   There are lots of people who understand what we are experiencing, care about us and want to help.   Try to connect with positive people who can help you build confidence.   Learn as much as you can about building esteem through websites, books and videos.  This will help you feel better about yourself and you will be able to deal with difficult situations.

I came across a site called Hey Ugly that was created to empower youth and be a part of the solution to bullying.  I don’t like the word Ugly but in this case it is an acronym that spells out – Unique Gifted Lovable You.  The website has all sorts of great information, videos and links on self-esteem and bullying to help people see the world from a real perspective and be able to understand themselves better.

There is a page with Celebrity Quotes that shows how some of your favourite actresses and actors feel about different topics.   Many of them have experienced self-esteem issues and bullying.  I’ve picked out a few to share, but you can read lots more at www.heyugly.org.

“People that feel alone or outcast that hurt, kids that feel bullied and lost, remember that you have a voice and you should use that voice to survive and persevere.”  ~Christina Aguilera

“I’ve realized that it’s time for me to show my audience that you don’t have to be perfect to achieve your dreams.  I’m okay with having bad dance moves.  I’m okay with having horrible lower teeth.  That’s what makes me me, and  for some reason it’s worked out all right.”  ~Katy Perry

“I was so shy.  Instead of waiting in line with the other kids at lunch, I’d go to a corner and buy a pretzel and orange juice.  I think I had that for lunch the first three years of high school.”  ~Peter Facinelli

“I’m like everyone else – I have days when I look in the mirror and I’m like ‘Oh my God, I wish I could change this or that’. The more you mature, you realize that those imperfections make you more beautiful.”  ~Beyoncé

“I was bullied quite a lot when I was growing up in my Peking Opera School.  I allowed myself to be bullied because I was scared and didn’t know how to defend myself.  I was bullied until I prevented a new student from being bullied.  By standing up for him, I learned to stand up for myself.”  ~Jackie Chan

 

 

 

 

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Canada looking at criminalizing cyber-bullying

This morning I wrote a post about bullying and I just read this news article.  Yeah Canada!  Glad that something is being done about cyber-bullying.    When anyone hurts another person intentionally, it is a criminal act and should be punished.

Canada is looking to criminalize cyber-bullying, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced Friday, after a pair of teenage suicides provoked by unrelenting online harassment.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5i4uFEFM3OKS3oUouI6q4lbyqhCrg?docId=CNG.762d19c791e614cdfd31b01ec3fd1c82.371

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Why are people so nasty?

When I was a child,  I had my share of mean comments from other kids that bullied me.  Almost every day, I heard words that were intended to hurt me.  Being small, I was called pipsqueak, tiny, midget, shorty.   Descriptive words were often added:  dumb kid, mouseface, stupid baby.   I hated going out for recess because I didn’t have any friends and I knew that I would be targeted.  Sometimes, the bullies were busy with someone else and I was spared until the next time.  Thankfully, I when I was in class, the bullies had to be quiet and respect the teachers so I didn’t hear those unkind words.  Then when I went home from school, the bullying stopped and I had peace until the next day or the next time.

Today, things are much harder.  Bullying can continue on all day, every day, never stopping.   Cyberbullying can be done 24 hours a day, through emails, texting, and social media.  People Frustrated Woman at Computer With Stack of Paperwho are the targets of bullies can be literally “beaten-up” continuously, which eventually wears them down and can destroy them mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually.

Bullying is a terrible thing that NOBODY should ever have to experience.  There is absolutely NO REASON to hurt someone else in the world on purpose.  NOBODY has the right to hurt another person.  Sometimes we can hurt other people unintentionally, but if we do, we should quickly apologize to that person and make amends.

Research shows that bullies are usually people who have been hurt themselves and they have low esteem.  In the environment they grew up in, they have been bullied or abused themselves and this is the only thing they know.  In order to feel better about themselves, they hurt other people.  This gives them a sense of power and temporarily boosts their esteem, which of course will be gone once they are hurt again themselves and the cycle continues.

People who are bullied often feel that they deserve to be bullied because there is something wrong with them.  This is not true and they shouldn’t allow themselves to feel hurt.  Now, if someone tries to bully me with their words, I look at the situation with a totally different perspective because I understand why it happens and my esteem is getting stronger.  I don’t allow myself to feel bad, instead I feel sorry for the bully and wonder who hurt them so badly that they feel the need to hurt other people.

I also used to think that I was the only one who was being bullied, but I know now that people of all ages and positions in life are bullied.   Even famous people who have thousands of adoring fans get nasty comments.  I just watched the following clip from celebrities that received some nasty tweets.  http://youtu.be/nrjp6e04dZ8

Again I ask the question,  “Why are people so nasty”?   This is because they haven’t received enough love and the proper attention in their lives and they haven’t been taught how to respect other people.  What a sad and terrible thing to gain satisfaction from hurting other people with words and actions.

Parents, teachers and other responsible adults who are in contact with children, need to try to help children build esteem, encourage them to be nice to each other and teach them how to deal with bullies.  It has been proven that children who have strong esteem are more likely to withstand negative peer pressure and bullying.   Children need to know that their lives have value and that they deserve to be treated with respect from everyone.  We all need this no matter what age we are.

PLEASE watch what you say to someone else.  Your words have a lot of power and they can cause a lot of damage.  We should always try to be nice to everyone we meet.

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Bullying doesn’t just happen to children and teens

boss scolding employee on floorUntil a few years ago, I thought that bullying was something that occurred on the playground at school.  When I was a child, I was bullied because I was small and shy.   I remember a group of  bigger boys cornering me at recess, calling me names and throwing stones.   In high school, I just stayed away from everyone so they couldn’t hurt me, but I still got picked on verbally with rude comments and cruel jokes.    I figured that once I left school, I wouldn’t be bullied anymore and it wasn’t until I was working a few years ago for a temp agency that I had a boss who I realized was a bully.   Luckily I had gained enough confidence in myself to not let his bullying get to me and I quit that assignment.

Bullying can happen to anyone at any age right from young children to seniors.   People who are bullies in their youth will continue to be bullies unless something stops them or until they are taught how to act properly.    Workplace bullying is a growing problem and can result in the loss of jobs for those who are being bullied.  Stats say that up to about 1/3 of workers may be bullied.  We all need to take a stand when we see someone being bullied, whether is a child or an adult, and step in to help the person being bullied.  Don’t just ignore what is happening and walk away.  Research has shown that when people intervene, this can put a stop to bullying.  Speak up and tell the bully to stop.   Tell someone about the incident.  Help in whatever way you can.  Don’t risk your life if there are weapons involved or you are out-numbered – this is when you need to call the police as quickly as possible.

Here is a short video clip on workplace bullying.   http://youtu.be/V-q2VRAxjh8

There are several organizations that are working hard to stop bullying and they need your support.  Here are just a few  www.bullying.org   www.stopbullyingworld.org    www.bullyingcanada.ca   www.antibullying.net

What are you doing to stop bullying?

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Do you carry a weapon with you?

Many people would answer ‘no’ to this question, however, everyone in this world carries one of the most dangerous weapons with them all the time.  What?!!?  Yes, we do.  We carry a weapon that is so destructive it can tear apart families, destroy relationships and even cause death.

What am I referring to?  Our tongue.  It is such a small part of us, but it can be more dangerous than guns or knives and cause a mountain of damage in our lives.

When we speak we can choose to use positive words or negative words.  Positive words can impart valuable information, they can encourage, they can help others.  Negative words can spread lies, discourage and hurt others.  Words can not only hurt others, they can also hurt ourselves if we are using negative self-talk and repeating the lies that others have told us.

There is a reason why we have 1 tongue, 2 eyes and 2 ears.  We SHOULD listen more and see more than we speak.  However many people lash out at others before they even consider the consequences of their words.  Bullying is a good example of how words affect people.   Watch the following short video clip called, ‘words hurt’ –  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1j6YA03hm4k

Let’s all try to be more careful with our ‘weapon’ and try to ‘kill people with kindness’ instead of destroying them with our words.

 

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BULLYING AWARENESS WEEK

I have been trying to check in all week to make sure that I’m doing my acts of kindness for World Kindness Week and I noticed that this was also Bullying Awareness Week.    Wouldn’t it be an awesome idea to get these 2 great ideas working together.   We could be doing Acts of Kindness to combat bullying.   Sounds strange, but I believe it could work.

I’ve already done a lot of research on bullies and I know that they act in such a manner because they have been bullied or abused themselves.  They didn’t have good adult role models and they usually suffer from low self-esteem.  By bullying others, it gives them a sense of control and power, thereby covering up their own insecurities and inadequacies.   I was bullied myself when I went to school, so I am always ready to help anyone who is in this situation.

So now I have a new idea to get my mind working (which doesn’t take much effort – my mind is always overactive and I wish I could turn it off sometimes) and I started searching for ‘bullying and acts of kindness’.  Wow, I guess I’m not the only one who had the same idea.  I got lots of results immediately.

  • On Nov 13th, 2012 a Fort Worth newspaper headline read, “City Stands up to Bullying with a Message of Kindness”.  The article talks about how the School District’s Kindness Matters Campaign is tied to the district’s efforts to curb bullying.
  • On Oct 5th, 2012 a Grand Forks blog for teachers and parents read, “Rachel’s Challenge – Counter Bullying with Acts of Kindness”.
  • On Sep 30th, 2011 on a website called HowToLearn.com it states, “An Act of Kindness can help Create Bully Free Schools.

These are just 3 of the many results that tie these 2 topics together.    I’m going to keep reading the articles and try to learn about ideas that I can use in my workshops and my own life to help combat bullying with acts of kindness.

How are you doing with your acts of kindness this week?  I did a couple more things on my list today – I’ve sorted through some clothing and already have a couple of big bags that I’m going to take to a women’s group – I stopped working to listen to a client talk about some issues she was having – and of course I keep smiling at everyone I see.  It gives you such a wonderful feeling when you are nice to other people!

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