John saw only his worst sides. Sometimes he did things to get praised, sometimes because he wanted something back, sometimes for the money; sometimes he yelled at the kids, sometimes he said an unkind thing to his wife; sometimes he made up excuses to avoid odious tasks, sometimes he cut corners on tasks he didn’t really want to do.
Usually he focused on only that side of himself. Of course, seeing only those examples he judged himself harshly. His negative self-talk, a little voice behind his right ear, told him he was greedy, worthless, mean, arrogant and obnoxious. Then he’d give up on himself and any projects he’d planned to do. But, he thought, at least he was beating himself down before anyone else could.
John’s self-bullying could depress him; he lost confidence, self-esteem and courage.
He suffered bouts of insecurity and anxiety. He thought he was a fake when people liked him or praised him or promoted him at work. In the depths of his despair he thought that there was something deep and inherently wrong with him.
This type of self-bullying might have been a good motivation strategy to get John working hard when he was growing up. His parents had practiced it relentlessly and John had continued it long after he left home and built his own life. Part of the justification for seeing all his failures was so he wouldn’t get a swelled head and become an arrogant, conceited jerk. But self-flagellation had begun to extract too great a toll on his life.
When John was able to put the few examples of his “failures” as a human being into the context of all the wonderful things he did, his life took a turn for the better. His imperfections were really minor. He was then able to motivate himself by seeing his successes, some coming after hard work and many struggles. He realized he was capable of learning, improving, making good choices and, especially, of succeeding.
By seeing the whole picture, he could also see that life wasn’t black-and-white. He didn’t have to be perfect to get into heaven. He didn’t have to be perfect to be liked, loved and appreciated.
Then he could finally take a deep breath, relax and love other people when the majority of what they did was worth loving. He began to enjoy the wonderful life he’d created.
The best way to learn how to stop bullying yourself and start being the person you want is to hire Dr. Ben for personalized coaching and counseling so you can:
- Develop the strength, courage, will and determination to be and to act your best resolutely, diligently and effectively.
- Develop a plan and master the skills necessary to create the life your spirit has always hungered for.
Since all tactics depend on the situation, call me at 1-877-8Bullies for expert coaching by phone or Skype.