Edited and reposted 8/3/19
My friend was anxious about an upcoming meeting with a bully.
This person had bullied and intimidated her in the past, using callous insults and interruptions during their conversation.
Bullying is Common at All Ages
Bullying is rampant in our world but we have a human NEED for respect. We NEED to maintain our self-respect and feel validated or we could fall to depths of sadness or depression with feelings of low self-worth.
Learn How to Counter a Bully
Thankfully, we can learn how to counter bullies. A behavioral health counselor provided my friend with a F.A.S.T. worksheet to help in her next communication with the bully and it’s worthy of sharing!
Marsha Linehan created Guidelines for Self-Respect Effectiveness: Keeping Respect for Yourself (FAST).
A way to remember these skills is to remember the word FAST.
F: Be Fair to YOURSELF and to the OTHER person. Remember to VALIDATE YOUR OWN feelings and wishes, as well as the other person’s.
A: No Apologies. Don’t over apologize. No apologizing for being alive or making a request at all. No apologies for having an opinion, for disagreeing. No LOOKING ASHAMED, with eyes and head down or with body slumped. No invalidating the valid.
S: Stick to Values. Stick to YOUR OWN values. Don’t sell out your values or integrity for reasons that aren’t VERY important. Be clear on what you believe is the moral or valued way of thinking and acting, and “stick to your guns.”
T: Be Truthful. Don’t lie. Don’t act helpless when you are not. Don’t exaggerate or make up excuses.
Help with Bullying at Any Age
Wouldn’t the world be a better place if we were taught relationship tools when we were children in school? Damion Fontaine and Scott Brotherton from Frank & Dean and Then Some had great ideas for teaching the value of respect in schools when they were interviewed.
Jeff Ellis teaches martial arts to overcome the effects of bullying. His story is inspiring, also.
With so many stories of bullying in the news, learn FAST to handle bullies!
Questions for the brave at heart:
Have you ever had a time you felt bullied? If yes, can you talk about it? How did you personally recover?
Or is it that you never really have recovered, and the thought of a bully brings back anger or frustration and grief?
Do you think you could admit it if YOU were the one who was the bully at one moment in your life? Maybe we’re not all that innocent?