The article, “Workplace bullying rampant Down Under,” is actually has a misleading title. The studies cited show that not only is workplace bullying rampant Down Under, but so is school bullying, and that the phenomena are not confined to Australia, but are world wide. Some of the statistics cited are: * A recent study of Catholic education teachers revealed that 97 per cent had been bullied and up to 50 per cent of public school teachers had been bullied by co-workers. More Catholic school teachers bullied than public school teachers – wow! Just like the doctors I’ve talked about. * A US-based, Trends in International and Mathematics and Science Study found that more than a quarter of all students in Australia had been bullied. Do you really think that it’s less here? * Although verbal bullying was the most common form among students, cyber bullying through emails and text messaging is also becoming a huge problem.
One writer said, “What’s the use of stopping school bullying when your sports people bully, or your politicians are bullying. Parents don’t really have the skills to teach their children not to be bullies or not to be targets.”
First, the “use of stopping bullying” in our individual space of the world – home, family, work – is that it makes the living there so much more fun. Don’t accept bullying in your personal environment even if the rest of the world does. Second, forget generalizations about parents. The only thing that really matters is you and me. No matter what the rest of the world is doing, our primary task is to protect our personal ecology. We can stop bullying in our environment and act as models of effective action to our family, friends and coworkers. We must teach our children to be strong, courageous, resilient and skilled enough to stop the bullying in theirs. If you don’t have great skills now, learn better ones.
All bullies are not the same, but their patterns of behavior, their tactics, are the same. That’s why I’ve found ways to stop most of them.
Yes, it’s good not to show that verbal bullying or cyberbullying has hurt our feelings but that’s only a small, first step. We also have to take strong action to stop bullies or get them out of our faces. If we don’t stop them, they’ll think we’re easy prey. Like sharks, they’ll just go after us more. Sometimes, fighting is the key to success.
Begin with the books “How to Stop Bullies in their Tracks” and “Parenting Bully-Proof Kids,” and the10-CD set. You will probably also need practical, pragmatic coaching and tactics designed to resolve your specific situations.