Stop Bullying Yourself – Your Kids are Watching!
I recently noticed a Facebook post about bullying that really struck me. This is that post – a lesson on bullying for children:
“A teacher in New York was teaching her class about bullying and gave them the following exercise to perform. She had the children to take a piece of paper and told them to crumple it up, stomp on it and really mess it up but do not rip it. Then she had them unfold the paper, smooth it out and look at how scarred and dirty it was. She then told them to tell it they’re sorry. Now even thought they said…. they were sorry and tried to fix the paper, she pointed out all the scars they left behind. And that those scars will never go away no matter how hard they tried to fix it. This is what happens when a child bullies another child, they may say they’re sorry but the scars are there forever. The looks on the faces of the children in the classroom told her the message hit home. Pass it on.”
This is not the first time that this message has come across my screen. I was once again touched by the lesson this teacher shared with her students. However, for the first time I thought about the adults these kids would become and the adults in their lives that are shaping their beliefs and behaviors, whether knowingly or not. My mind immediately saw the millions of images on Instagram of social worthy selfies, fit and fabulous, blended with the messages of struggling and those of inspiration, as well as the trolls ripping these perfect images apart without ever knowing the story or the person. Bullying doesn’t end as we enter adulthood, and the person we bully most frequently is OURSELF!
I shared the post about bullying and added the following:
“This is an important message for us adults and how we talk to ourselves too! We carry with us a lifetime of baggage and add to it our own messages of not being enough… not thin enough, smart enough, successful enough, supportive enough, nurturing enough, etc! Just like the kids learned about the scars bullying leaves in the message below, if you constantly bully yourself and tell yourself you aren’t enough… you can’t make those scars go away either! Your insecurities are visible to your children, friends and coworkers. I encourage you as we head into the WEEK OF LOVE to love yourself! You are enough. Be a good role model and teach your kids to accept and love themselves as they are! Be your own Valentine this year! 💗 -Marci”
I thought about it the rest of the night, and it was still on my mind as I opened my eyes. Why are we so mean to ourselves? Why do we judge ourselves and others? Likewise, why don’t we take steps to address our insecurities but instead blame others and mask our pain with food, drink, sex, television, social media, etc? I wish I had a magic answer so we could all instantly be happy and proud of ourselves. Instead, the best we can do is take steps each day to live the best possible life to fill our hearts with joy, help us attain our goals, and be the happiest and healthiest versions of ourselves. I encourage you to rethink how you speak to yourself – and this is important because not only are you hurting yourself, but your children are watching and learning these behaviors for themselves!
Click here to see my post about self-talk to learn more about how the words we say to ourselves impact our health and happiness.
MOVING FORWARD – STOP STOMPING ON YOUR OWN LIFE STORY
Ultimately though, this all ties back to accepting and believing in yourself and that YOU ARE ENOUGH. I leave you with this guided meditation from Intention Inspired. YOU ARE ENOUGH and I hope you can embrace that. What a gift not only to yourself, but as the life’s lesson you leave with your children as well! If you start to doubt, participating in a meditation like the one below can help get you back on track. I hope my words have inspired you to begin a journey of self-acceptance!