GREAT HEALTH: Bullying – Draw A Line In The Sand Part 2 | Great Health Guide
GREAT HEALTH: Bullying – Draw A Line In The Sand Part 2

GREAT HEALTH: Bullying – Draw A Line In The Sand Part 2

‘Draw A Line In The Sand Part 2’ by Suzanne Henwood published in Great Health Guide (June 2016). In the previous article, Suzanne discussed the issue of bullying and how to recognise it. In her follow up article, she offers simple tools to help you say ‘no’ and actions to stop it from occurring. 
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GREAT HEALTH: Draw A Line In The Sand Part 2

written by Suzanne Henwood

In the previous article we looked briefly at what bullying is and discussed some of the harsh and real impacts that it can have on people. In this and the following article, I want to share with you some simple tools to help you say ‘It is not OK’; ‘Enough is enough’; ‘I am worth more than this’. 

If you are ready to walk away from bullying – once and for all, put these steps into practice. Make them become a habit so that you can start to build the life you want to lead.

Step 1 – Decide you want things to change NOW and declare it:

The first step is arriving at the point where you really want to change. If you accept that you cannot change other people’s behaviour, then the only control you have is to change something inside of you. What we know is that by making the change, to not accept bullying behaviour, you also change the system within which you live and work.

By saying it out loud, it will be processed in a different part of your brain and this helps to re-programme your Reticular Activating System (RAS) to move you towards a new future. The RAS acts like a filter that determines what you pay attention to and what to ignore. It’s like your own internal GPS, setting the direction for your life. 

Step 2 – Create the question – what do you want?

Often when we are having a hard time, we focus on what we do not want – what we want to move away from. While this can be a useful initial form of motivation, an even more effective motivational tool, can be to find something you want so much that nothing will stop you driving towards it. 


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So – what is it that you want? Write a question and say it to yourself daily, because saying this out loud every day, several times a day, will create a new neural pathway in your brain. Yes, it changes the structure of your brain, which is the most powerful thing you can do to move yourself beyond accepting the old way of being bullied. 

Questions might be:

  • How many ways can I show people that I believe I am more than enough today? Think of specific ways that you can put this into action.

  • How can I compassionately stand up for myself in an appropriate way today?

  • How can I be authentically me today and know that I am valued and accepted?

Choose one of these, or create your own, something so meaningful to you that you will make it a habit to focus on daily. Commit to saying it out loud daily so that you set your RAS to solve this problem for you in a compassionate, safe and effective way. Neuroscience has shown us that by resetting your filters you can make new choices and new neural pathways will generate different results for you, regardless of what is going on around you.

Step 3 – Watch your self-talk – and change it:

We are often our own worst enemy and harshest critic. Start to be aware of any self-talk which is not supportive and do whatever you need to change that. Imagine that you are talking to your best friend – how would you talk to him/her? Now become your own best friend and talk to yourself with the same love and respect.

Have you ever thought that you can change your self-talk and change its impact? For example you can change your voice to a cartoon character, Donald Duck for example, so you cannot take it seriously. Try it – say something negative that you would often say to yourself, but make it sound like Donald Duck’s voice. It changes the way that you perceive it, doesn’t it? What happens if you turn it down, or change the speed? This changes its impact as well. What if you create a stop sign that comes up as soon as you say anything negative to yourself? STOP! Pause and smile, recognise that was the old you or someone else’s voice that often criticised you. Then, decide what you, as your own best friend, would want to say instead. Initially you may not believe the new words but say them anyway. Over time, you will become even more open to this new way of thinking, wondering how you accepted those old ways of talking to yourself.

These three simple steps when practised daily, will totally transform how you are experiencing what is going on around you. Begin to honour and respect yourself so much, that it changes how others see you too. This does not negate their behaviour. Bullying is wrong – plain and simple but until we find a way to eradicate it, the next best thing you can do is to find a way, so that it doesn’t bother you, no longer controls you and no longer gets inside your head.

In the next and final article in Great Health GuideTM, we will look at three more steps to ensure that you have more than enough tools in your tool box to really step into the confident you who has reconnected with how awesome you are.

Author of this article:
Dr Suzanne Henwood is an Associate Professor in Health and Social Sciences and a Master Trainer of mBIT multiple Brain Integration Techniques). She can be found through her website.

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