Monday, August 8, 2011

Heart to Heart: Bullying & Word Wounds

A dear friend of mine describes bullying just as the name implies, “like a bull charging for our self-esteem”.  I don’t think she could have come up with a more accurate definition. That is exactly how the victim of bullying feels….under attack where the damages can be devastating. 

Verbal and emotional abuse can leave the victim wounded and sometimes scarred for life. The bruises and cuts caused by our words may not be visible to the eye but the pain is real and can be felt deeply. Emotional pain can be just as damaging as physical pain. Word wounds often take longer — sometimes a lifetime — to heal. One person's divisive, dysfunctional behaviour can permeate an entire soul like a cancer. Think about that next time before you speak and ask yourself: “Could my words be cancerous?”

To the abusers:  Speaking wrongly or cruelly of others is a very dishonest and malicious way of praising yourself. Bringing others down in order to bring yourself up only brings you down in the end. Self-glory, especially at the expense of others, is distasteful and undesirable.  So if you’re looking for admiration or approval in some way then tormenting others is not the way to achieve your goal. It only makes you less likeable. You don’t have to be mean to be remembered or prove a point. Be an encourager rather than an intimidator.

To the victims: Know who you are and what you are capable of.  Believe in yourself and have faith in your abilities. When you find security in the fact that you are valuable simply because you are a capable, one-of-a-kind individual full of potential then you are less likely to fall victim to the verbal and emotional abuse of bullies. Don’t help the Devil do his job…don’t trash your confidence by allowing someone to manipulate you or make you believe false statements. When the enemy starts to whisper lies into your ear, speak truth to your heart. You know what is true and what isn’t….be the strong, capable person that you were created to be, not the false character others are trying to make you out to be. Don’t let what someone else says distract you from your goals. Don’t invest any energy into the false attacks from others. “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”

Also, don’t be afraid to seek help in the battles you may face. We weren’t meant to go through life alone. We have ALL been mistreated, hurt and misunderstood, so you are never alone in this. Find someone who will be your source of encouragement along the way and you be a source of encouragement to others. 

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