This Weekly Me is going to focus on one issue that is rampant in our schools and seems to be at an all-time high. The issue is bullying.
Devoted to Me does not distinguish between bully, victim or bystander because we recognize that at either end of the spectrum or somewhere in between these are kids. And these kids are in pain and filled with self-doubt. All of them.
According to Dr. Phil, a child’s brain does not reach full maturity where they are completely capable of determining the consequences of their actions until they reach the age of 25. This means that the bullying happening today is our fault. Adults are failing our kids. The good news is we can do something about it.
Our lives, in almost every aspect, have gotten easier and faster and we thrive on instant gratification. We get things yesterday and heaven forbid we have to wait until tomorrow. In my humble opinion I believe this has trickled over into how we parent. It’s as if we expect a light switch to go on and suddenly our kids know how to act politely and speak respectfully. Their first choice is the right one. They strive to do the best in everything they attempt to do. After all we’ve told them once, shouldn’t they get it right away? I admit that I have struggled with this. I tire out and become inpatient with the parenting process at times. I find myself becoming disappointed easily.
I also believe because of the speed at which we live our lives we have skipped or minimized some very important life skills that can only be learned. Things like empathy which is the ability to identify with and understand somebody else’s feelings or difficulty. Instead of respect, there is competitiveness towards each other. Empowerment is a foreign word. Where is the filter we were raised with, if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say it?
You only need to look at the way kids are bullying to know that all of these life skills are almost nonexistent. They bully now not only at school but more frequently from the comfort of their own home hidden behind a computer. Words are thrown at each other without regard for feelings or the consequences of their actions. The victims of these bullies believe these words as if it were the truth and sometimes take drastic measures. Then there are those that stand by and watch it happen knowing its wrong but feeling powerless to do anything about it. And we as adults see the aftermath shocked and completely confused as to how to get these kids to stop all of this insanity.
These kids weren’t born with a mark that said you are a victim, you need to bully to get somewhere or you are powerless to do anything but stand by and watch. They have learned this behavior.
It’s time to step up. All of us from parents to teachers to administrators. We are all responsible for where we are today and we need to plug back in and realize that if we don’t do something about this issue we’re headed for more and more serious trouble. It doesn’t matter if you have witnessed it or not. Or whether your child has skirted by without being bullied or, thank goodness, is not the bully themselves. Because do you really know the truth? Anderson Cooper aired a special called “The Bullying Stops Here” where he revealed two important facts. First, kids are often the bully themselves as well as the victim in order to climb the social ladder. They bully to get to the top of the mountain and once there often times become the victim of bullying. Second, 81% of bullying incidents are never reported.
Devoted to Me believes that in order to create change there needs to be a path where kids learn to feel who they are. By feeling who they are they come to see that anything they want to be they already are. Beauty, Purpose, Love, Faith, Truth and Strength are all there within each of us. When you see it in yourself from the depths of who you are you naturally see it in others. This is at the heart of why I created Devoted to Me.
I’m not here to say that this is a quick fix or will be an overnight process. As I’ve said in the past this is like any other muscle group that needs to be strengthened, toned and maintained. It takes work to get here and it takes work to stay here.
I feel the urgency. Can you feel it too?
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Until next time…
Devoted to Me begins with me and continues to you. Accept it. Pass it on.