Bullied No More – Respond not React
Genghis and Caspar
Inside Genghis Khan is Caspar Milquetoast. Inside Caspar Milquetoast is Genghis Khan.* Who we present on the outside is not always how we feel on the inside. Being around family over the holidays, many people told me about revisiting memories or experiencing situations where there is/was bullying. There you are again with that sibling or parent reminded or confronted all over again.
To give you a fresh perspective, consider that person who is the bully, looking all powerful as they assert themselves with words or actions to intimidate and demean you (Genghis), are in fact the very person who feels insecure and not good enough on the inside (Caspar). They are asserting themselves on you, who they perceive to be weaker, as a desperate attempt of feeling powerful for one moment and to cover up how inadequate they really feel.
When you are being bullied, you may look like the one who is timid, insecure and not good enough (Caspar). Yet, inside you, is a powerful person just waiting to get out (Genghis). Not speaking up for yourself in the moment, ironically is your attempt to cover up how powerful you are.
The bully and the bullied are just the flip side of the same coin. Both want to connect, to feel loved and appreciated for who they are. Each is not honoring nor valuing that your true power lies within. By looking at how Talented, Able and Gifted (TAGs) you are and by owning your feelings of insecure and not good enough, you can each feel powerful, secure and good enough.
Respond not React
You can learn to respond and not react when your insecurity gets triggered. By acknowledging that feeling of insecurity or not good enough rather than rush to cover it up, you can defuse the situation. Perhaps you have a brother who wants to let you know how bright he is and how he can out smart you. Own it and look to where you are secure. “There you go again, out smarting me. You always were able to stay three moves ahead.” Now, his power is diffused. You have owned your part while knowing that your gifts lies else where say in music or athletics. You can feel good about who you are while acknowledging him. If a parent is reminding where you are not good enough, IF IT IS TRUE, then own it. “Yeah, that is an area in my life where I can use improvement that is why I am taking a course starting in January.” If it is not true anymore, then let them know that too. “Yeah, I used to not take care of my finances very well, but I have found a system and am managing them well now.”
The Gift of the AnTAGonist
Whether you are the bully or bullied, realize that one of the gifts that you can give yourself is to NEVER BULLY YOURSELF AGAIN. Really get that. Think of all the times you have abused you, the names you have called yourself, the way you have treated your body, what and who you have tolerated in your life. Become your own good mother and your own good father.* Have compassion for you. See how talented, able and gifted you are. Know for sure that your true power lies within.
Patricia Sun taught me these concept many years ago.
Genghis Khan, the founder of the Mongol Empire. Caspar Milquetoast, a comic strip character in the 1920’s who was someone unassertive and timid.