I wanted to share with you guys an excerpt from a new book project I am working on with Nate Lambert, we have been working with children and families going through bullying situations for the past few years and decided to devote the time and effort to make an interactive book families can use to deal with bullying.
Enjoy the following short excerpt, give us feedback, idea, or questions about bullying we can add to our book, or just share your bullying story and help us keep someone “out of harms way”.
- Find the Right Ears
We have identified our problems, we have decided the best way to communicate our problems, we have practiced and rehearsed and know we are ready to make a leap of faith and ask for help, but who do we ask and why? What if they don’t care? What if they don’t help……all of the what if’s are swirling around your head right now, all of the doubt, and even all those things the bully is saying about you are probably bubbling up to the surface. Your self esteem, and self efficacy are at an all time low.
But…..don’t worry, it is normal, very normal. Everyone feels, or has felt that exact same way at some point or another, and getting through this initial resistance is part of getting your problem solved, one giant leap closer to getting past this ugly situation, and back to enjoying your life at school, or work, or whatever space a bullying is stealing from you. It is part of a process that you will build a lifetime of future success upon.
So don’t look at this part with dread, or fear, or doubt, embrace it, get excited, help is on the way!
4) Qualities of the right ears:
Now that we are ready to talk, let’s talk about who we can confide this issue with.
- Find someone you trust: pick someone you know that is trustworthy, that you feel safe telling your problem to. Parents, pastors, teachers, coaches, a close friend can be good places to start.
- Find Someone who can help: Your dog will listen to your problem, will care, and probably love to help…..but they are not in any position to. Pick someone who is in a position to make a difference with their words or influence. The old phrase “it’s not what you know…it’s who you know” comes to mind with this step. Look for a person of positive influence.
- Find Someone who is fair: We are not looking for revenge, someone to bully our bully, so we don’t need to look for a bigger bully, or someone who is only interested in your outcome. We need someone who will work with you, and the bully, who has everyone’s best interest in mind. Look for someone who can help…..everyone.
- Find a person of action: So many people talk, and so few walk. Look for a person of action, who will get things done, and won’t stop until the job is done, again we don’t just need someone to lend an ear like our faithful dog will, but someone who will lend a hand. Find a person of action.
Exercise: Make a list of people with the right kind of ears. Some of them might not have all those qualities, or you may be unsure about them, but we will always have doubts, and fears. We have to plan as best as we can and then become persons of action ourselves and speak up to someone we think will help.
From the upcoming book “Out of Harms Way” by Joshua Page and Nate Lambert
Our seventh episode on bullying, and bullying issues deals with dealing with your problems head on, and finding positive outlets to deal with stress, and the people in your life who can support you through a bullying situation.
Problems, especially big ones, don’t seem to be in short supply these days. Sometimes we can’t help but feel somewhat helpless about many of the things that are going on in our world. In these times it is easy to lose our bearings, and even our faith in people.
The following story was a wonderful reminder to me about the impact we can have with the most simple actions, and how one seemingly small act can grow and multiply and have a profound affect on people, communities and the world.
For the last few months I have opened the doors of our dojo to any family in our community that is having trouble with bullies. Honestly, it has been tougher than I expected. Not from the teaching or education standpoint, but from having to see how bullying is affecting those involved. The stress that it puts on a family being bullied. Seeing the children being bullied come in upset and frustrated about being bullied and very much confused about why someone is being so mean to them. As a man, and a father of three boys it is particularly tough seeing boys come in who have been bullied because as I have been through it myself, and can’t help but to think what if someone was doing this to one of my sons.
It is so frustrating to see bullies who have been misinformed about what it is to be a man, how real men act and behave. Acting out the hyper masculine, ego driven roles that popular culture, and advertisers are so good at selling us.
It’s one of the reasons that martial arts training is so valuable. It gives men a clear picture of what real toughness is, both mentally and physically. It creates a hierarchy that teaches respect for your teachers, fellow students, and yourself. Patience is developed through teaching and working with new students. Humility is learned through round after round with people whose skill is far greater than yours, and having to ask those people to share his/her knowledge with you. A sense of gratitude is formed for all those who have had to support and teach you on your path towards blackblet.
Above all it forges one of the skills vital to become a man that we don’t see on TV, or don’t talk about in locker rooms.
Kindness: A boy cannot become a man without being kind. Without learning the power of giving with no expectation of reward. About helping others who are less fortunate or advantaged as they are. Not separating themselves from those who they consider different, but taking the time to appreciate and learn from others.
Boys seperate themselves into groups based on all kinds of useless criteria like how much money they have, how high they can jump, how far they can throw a ball, etc. Men realize these things are a fleeting as they are useless, and seek to find those people who not only improve their athletic ability but the quality of their character as well. Oh yea, and for goodness sake smiling every one and awhile doesn’t hurt either!
Click here to see a video of a real man in action. I have shared it before and will continue to do so untill I find a better example of what a real man looks like in action. Maybe one of the aspiring men reading this article will tackle a project like this one day (hint, hint).