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What you will get: Reflections on why people bully


Bullying is on the increase.


It’s been around since humans began. It’s just that these days, it’s easier than ever to do. It starts in the school room. It continues in the workplace.


And of course now you can bully people on the other side of the world within seconds using a quick social media message.


So the BIG question that fascinates me as a psychologist, is…


“Why do people bully?”


And having read many articles and books on this subject and observed many bullies in action, I find it always comes back to the same thing….


People bully as a way of coping with low Self Worth.


And before I explain the link, here’s a quick reminder of the way I define self worth in my LPS Online Leadership Programme:


“True self worth is not about thinking you are perfect or better than others. It is about having a sense of comfort with who you are. It is about being humble.


It is recognising with pride your strengths and being realistic about and at ease with your weaknesses.


At a deeper subconscious level true self worth is an integrated belief and feeling of ‘I am ok because I am me.’ ”


So true self worth gives you the capacity to care more for others. To respect others. To have empathy for others.


Not things that go hand in hand with bullying right?


People with low self worth basically have an overriding inner belief of “I am not enough.”


And so they try to find ways of proving to others and themselves that they are enough.


And one way of doing this is bullying.


And what’s more…


Research shows that bullies usually target other people with low self worth to bully. They make easier targets and are easier to upset emotionally.


One study that demonstrated this was carried out with some inmates in a US prison. They were shown videos of people walking along the side walk in New Your and they were then asked which of the people they would be most likely to pick on and start bullying.


Logically you would assume it was the smallest people, right?


Not so. The people they chose to bully were not chosen based on age, race, size or gender. They picked the people whose body language showed little confidence, so had apparent low self worth.


So bullies will target someone they think they can most easily dominate.


But like I said, if you have genuinely high self worth you never need to dominate anyone.


You have no need to prove to others you are better than them. You have no need for the attention or false recognition that bullies often get from peers.
You have no need to show the world how strong you are.


So my call to the world of educators is plain and simple:


Let’s start teaching self worth in the classroom!


Let’s teach kids how to value and respect themselves in a healthy way that doesn’t rely on putting down others.


Let’s create a society where bullies no longer feel the need to bully because they actually like themselves.


Are you with me in my quest?


To your success







Steve Neale
“Europe’s Leading Expert on Personal and Professional Growth”


Psychologist, Executive Coach, EI Practitioner, Award Winning Trainer, International Author, Psychodynamic Therapist, Hypnotherapist, Mindfulness Instructor, International Speaker, Creator of the LPS, Creator of the Accredited Masters in High-Performance Leadership

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