Bullying: How Can You Navigate a Bully?

Most of us have experienced bullying in some way, shape, or form. As I was taking notes for this podcast I thought, “I really haven’t been bullied.” As I was recording this best decluttering podcast episode on bullying, I realized, “Yes, I have been bullied.” It was surprising to me all the memories that came flooding back to me.

Take actions from today’s podcast:

  • Recognize the signs of bullying in children
  • Be aware of the types of bullies
  • Pay attention to any physical or mental health fall out you might have as a result of bullying
  • Be aware of where you might bully someone
  • Formulate a plan for when you’re being harassed
  • Share you’re being bullied
  • Get support for being bullied
  • Report inappropriate behavior

To learn how Julie can support you with navigating bullying and more: https://reawakenyourbrilliance.com/

Certified life coach, author & award-winning professional life organizer Julie Coraccio shares steps and tips to support you in creating the life you choose, deserve and desire through decluttering your life, mindfulness and how to organize your life.

About Clear Your Clutter Inside & Out

Clutter is stuck stagnant energy and prevents you from creating the life you choose, desire and deserve. We discuss clutter in all its forms: energetic, spiritual, emotional, mental & physical, relationships, health, finances and more. We share tips and take action steps for clutter free living and how to organize your life and death with end of life planning. We’re thinking outside the box on areas where people might not realize where clutter is blocking them. When we remove clutter from our lives we can discover our passions, lead the extraordinary lives we are all meant to live and share our gifts with the world.

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Julie Coraccio 0:01
Today on Clear Your Clutter inside now, we’re talking about bullying. Have you ever been targeted by someone or a group? Because you’re considered different? Do you see people who have greater physical or social power using it to their advantage? Are you the victim of bullying and not sure what you can do to stop it? Learn to recognize and prevent bullying as we continue our month focused on tough challenges. Do you control your clutter? Or does your clutter control you? Unclear your clutter inside now we’ll teach you awareness as well as action steps to create change in your life. Come on, let’s get started. Today’s episode was inspired by a couple things. I had a niece that was bullied. And if you’re gonna get bullied, this was the best possible school. She was second grade, maybe third grade. And she couldn’t have had a better set of teachers a better school and a better principal to get through that. Not everyone has that. I when I was writing this, like, oh, you know what, I’m not bullied. And then I thought. So we have people that and I’m like, No, we are being bullied. So they will sit outside the house. I’m going to have everything on videotape and just for a minute or two just sit in their car in front of our house. Now they’re passive aggressive bullies. They don’t have much. And they do it when it Starks haven’t decided, if I’m gonna, how I’m going to proceed and let people know. But I thought you know what it is. That’s what they’re trying to do. They’re trying to bully and intimidate us for standing up for ourselves. Cuz I thought really, I’ve had Mean Girls, for sure. But that was in one way bully, huh? Nothing that’s sticking out to me at the moment. My husband was bullied so badly that he had to quit school. Want to say he was in junior high 6/7 eighth grade. And now on another timeline, I laugh he’s got his PhD is working for someone like Tesla, and he’s the smartest man I’ve ever met. But he was bullied so severely, he had to quit. And that angers me. Because his mother was a single mom, his father had been killed. And she had, you know, they had four kids all year apart. And she had enough going on and administration doing anything, teachers didn’t do anything. And no, this was a while ago, also to listen to reach out to me how he was rebuilding his life and how the podcast was part of that he was doing all the work. And he had mentioned some of his challenges. And he was overcoming that he had been bullied. Anyone can bully or be a victim of bullying, and our culture, we’ve gotten better. I think we’re moving in the right direction, but we still allow it to happen. I remember, gosh, probably 20 years ago, so I had a friend and her child was in Catholic school. And there was a bully. And I thought, oh, you know if anyone’s gonna take care of it, the Catholic school, they didn’t do anything until all the parents in the grade were like, look, we want this kid expelled. And so that finally moved them to take more action. I think that also what’s changing is that, you know, going, Oh, just be a tough guy just you know, get through it. And that’s not okay. And there are sensitive men out there. I’m married to a guy’s guy who’s sensitive. My brothers, my father, all the men in my family are what I would classify as guys guys, and are sensitive. And I think that it’s harder on men sometimes. And it’s not to negate what happens to women. But bullying can be very traumatic. You can have an extreme response, like my husband who quit school, or you have I can tell you the mean girls were to me, says I’m talking about this, I’m remembering an incident where like, oh, you know what, I might classify that as bullying by that parent to me, I have to think about that a little later. bullying is a problem, whether you’re the bully or the one getting bullied. So that’s, I think, a huge challenge in life. And again, you know, all these challenges don’t have to be something huge, you know, you can, unfortunately get bullied physically and, and have physical harm, but it can be someone who’s bullying you to do something that you’re not comfortable with, even if it’s a small thing. Going to encourage you to take a moment. How have you been bullied? Or when you were the bully? And how did that create clutter in life? You from

the National Center against bullying, which I believe is out of the UK, there was an online survey of more than 2000 adults in the United States. And it found 31% of Americans have been bullied as an adult, that’s a third of the population. And 43% Say the behavior has become more accepted recently, the survey and I believe this was 2020 the survey to find cooling as being subjected to repeated negative behavior intended to harm or intimidate. So that’s really incredible. That’s interesting. Because my perspective is we’re starting to talk about it more and be open about it. So what’s first let’s talk about what is the health impact of being bullying you know, we talk about bullying and some maybe immediate consequences but over the long term things, especially if you’ve had repeated bullying, what are some of the negative impacts in a survey 71% said they suffered from stress. Now that’s completely understandable. You know, I’ll have to try to find an updated statistic 80% of our health care. What we go in for is related to stress. I had to go to the ER when I was last home. My March visit with my mom and I never got headaches and I felt like my head was gonna explode. I was like, I’m gonna try to sleep it off got up in the morning like bam, bam. Went I think it’s a CAT scan that did your head and we went to the Ohio er, which was much better in my hometown so anyway, did that I so maybe I’m dehydrated so check electrolytes and the doctor looked like he was five I felt really old and he said yeah, you’re stressed out. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with you. You know, we were most concerned with the CAT scan we did some blood work your tests are fine. I got a lot going on. That really like was like wow, seeing the chiropractor reducing my stress I’ve been really good about eating better and walking but just so much going on. That was kind of tough to hear. And so I’m have not got the bill yet. They didn’t even take my it’s 200 bucks to when you get the ER since out of state. I mean, I don’t know how yours hurry hours out of network I’m not looking forward to that. It was my husband said it’s only money and my health is important. The 71% are suffering from stress from the bully 70% experience anxiety of depression, of course, you can understand that 55% report a loss of confidence. 39% suffer from sleep loss. 26% have headaches and 22 experience muscle tension or pain. 9% reported a mental breakdown. That’s heartbreaking to me, but understandable. 17% noted an inability to function day to day, ie they’d call in sick frequently I can completely understand that. I had you know, as I’m thinking about this, I had a boss that was kind of a bully. And it didn’t end until I stood up to him. And I complained to the CEO. This was the same one who said I was too sensitive and felt it was appropriate to share her psychological Take on me. But that’s for another day. I hated Sunday night, I would just feel tension in my body, I did not want to go into work. So that completely makes sense to me. Other Health responses to emotional strain, included gastrointestinal changes, nausea, elevated blood pressure and cardiovascular issues. And I apologize this survey was done by doctors that do dot O ‘s geopathic.org. So that was where the survey was from. And the other thing that they found in the survey was that new findings saying that the impact on mental and physical health continues long into adulthood often in the workplace home an educational setting, so willing as a child is going to impact you as an adult most likely. So I wanted to include first some signs for kids. So if you have a child in your life doesn’t mean you have to have a child you can be a mentor to one but here are some signs that they’re being bullied. Changes in their sleeping eating patterns. They’re crying a lot or angry a lot. Mood swings. It feel ill in the morning, probably because they don’t want to go to school. They withdraw or maybe they start stuttering or stammering or they might become aggressive and unreasonable. They won’t talk about what’s wrong. Maybe they start to take it out on their siblings and target one sibling they might lose money or steal money.

Some physical signs or unexplained bruises, cuts and scratches. They come home with missing or damaged belongings or clothes come home hungry, maybe they have a bully stealing their lunch money or their lunch. To school sites. If your child’s being bullied, don’t want to go to school, that’s probably obvious. They change the route to school or frightened of walking to school. They don’t want to go to school on the bus train and the grades begin to fail. Other signs of bullying. They’re often alone are excluded from friendship groups at school. A frequent target for teasing, mimicking or ridicule. They’re unable to speak up in class and appear insecure, frightened. Now you have to remember as kids, we don’t have the tools we have as adults, we also have a limited perspective. encourage you, you know, it’s 20 years ago, all the parents saying hey, this kid, it’s not acceptable. The family’s not doing anything about it. We want them out and it took everyone coming together to make that happen. So what are some adult signs of bullying? I found a lot of these from cnn.com An article in 2019 on adult bully survivor tips. A tangible or material bully. So they use their formal power such as being a boss, or an executive, or material power, such as having legal authority or control over finances to intimidate others. I mentioned another podcast a woman who they’re 10 months behind on the mortgage. She’s not on the deed and her husband hid this from her. And that’s, I think, a form of bullying. She has no control or the finances. She’s had no say or no input and had to create a secret account. I mentioned my boss when I was in Los Angeles, not the really awesome one. Richard, this was the boss. Previous to him. One week before I was supposed to leave vacation complained about it. I’m like, I put this in three or four months ago. What’s the problem now and that was finally the final straw. That pushed me to stand up for myself. So what I learned later was they had hired me to write grants. And he was a really good writer. I definitely learned things from him. But he said, Well, I need a grant writer so I can go out as Director of Development and raise money. Well, he that wasn’t his thing. That wasn’t his strong suit, and he didn’t want to go out. So instead of going out to do his new job, he would spend his time correcting me and he was a bully. Now that I think about it. Verbally bully, you know what they’re gonna do, they’re gonna insult you. criticize you. Or tease you, right? Oh, you just can’t take a joke. You’re too sensitive. A might be sexist, racist, or homophobic and it can go to the dream of threatening you. It’s like the bullies who? In my neighborhood, they haven’t said anything. And you know what? One thing I do when I walk the neighborhood is I stand tall. I’m like, Bring it on. I have zero problem calling the police. We’ve already done it once you do anything touched me. 911 is the first call. I have that energy. I don’t slip over when I walk. I look at people like the ones that ignore me. I just look them. Look them straight in the eye. Well, not technically, because they’re looking down. But that’s about owning your space and owning your energy. Passive aggressive fully, they’re like nicey. Nice, but they do let it air and subtle. So that might be someone who gossips or maybe they try to do in a jokey manner or sarcastic but it’s at the expense of someone. They can do little signs such as rolling their eyes making facial gestures, or maybe they mimic them or big old sigh You know, you can’t miss it. And they also tend to socially or professionally isolate their prey. Think about maybe if you’ve been in a work situation if there’s someone that they’ve done that to and what that’s going to do is increase it and cause an increase in insecurity and anxiety which you can understand it if you are employed somewhere and they’ve isolated you. That’s not fun. Cyber non force I think we’ve we have had an increase

in this I just as I am writing this a mother, I just, I just do not understand it she created I think they’re called Deep fake videos of her daughter’s cheerleading rivals. And I think she also sent threatening text. And I don’t know if she emailed them, but basically to the I guess that surely administration’s we have these teenager doing I don’t know if it was vaping. I think it was worse than that. But I’m assuming to knock out or the rivals. I don’t know if her child was already on the cheerleading squad or was trying out and I just makes me shake my head and is credible, but cyberbullying, that texts, emails, harassing people on social media, that’s something we need to create laws around. I’ll never forget that story about Gosh, and I want to say is it’s been 1520 years and the mother acted like a fake boyfriend. And then drop the girl like she was acting like a teenage boy and I want to say the girls 12 or 14 and kill herself. And the community’s response. And I think the Amish are smart, and they shunned her. She unfortunately, if I’m remembering correctly, because there weren’t any laws on the book, so she couldn’t if she was charged, it might have been minimal anyway, I can’t comprehend what it’d be like to have your child commit suicide. I just I can’t. My heart just aches for for anyone who has gone through that. And so the town shunned her and she eventually moved and as far as I’m concerned, you got off lightly with shunning. Because disciplina you’re supposed to be the adult in the situation and why you would do that is just unfathomable to me and so cyber bullying is a huge issue. And I think it’s only increasing and we need to strengthen laws around that. Course, we also going to have a physical bully, right? This can be physical, sexual, or domestic abuse. Do you feel the weight of clutter as a big burden, you belong to relief? Are you aware that something needs to change, but you’re not sure what or how to move forward. Looking for a little more support that budget friendly, visit reawaken your brilliance on Patreon to learn more, or find the link at reawaken your brilliance calm. I mentioned last time and gaslighting I didn’t think of this and it’s completely changed my thinking but also having the silent treatment whether it’s from an individual group and as a way of bullying because you know, part of it like oh, you’re leaving me alone, thank goodness or they spread lies and gossip about the person. That’s another way that emotional mental, but I think has a physical component, I guess for me because you’re speaking or not speaking with the silent treatment. But it’s not just the the hitting, or the domestic abuse. That to me is part of it the silent treatment and the spreading lies because you’re physically talking. How do you survive an adult bully? Most likely, if an adult is bullying, they were might have been abused as a kid or a victim of bullying themselves. And they suffer the worst outcomes as adults. I’m thinking of that guy that I’ve known since grade school who is a bully? See? Wow, it’s interesting. Like I don’t know that much bullying my life when he comes on my Facebook page, although he thankfully unfriended he and his wife hasta LaVista. But that was bullying. And

I don’t know if there’s mental illness, it doesn’t take away from it even if there is none. But when you go on and you harass and you bully and you’re trying to change someone in the middle, that’s bullying. You know, they might have been a victim of abuse from bureau of bullying and it’s easier again to be keyboard warrior. They also they found might suffer from a serious illness, abuse drugs, be of convicted felon, but then again, I don’t want you to think that this is kind of a neat little package because bullying come in all shapes and sizes. They really do. I would say most likely what I agree with and all the research is that they were victims of abuse or bullying. As a child, I think that that’s probably a common thread but again, no need to be a mental illness. And they tend they say to be more isolated, less educated and poor. But again, that’s not my finding. I’m going to stick with the the main thread of what happened is kids The bottom line is they don’t feel good about themselves. And in order to get a pump to their self esteem, they’ve got to take it out on someone else. So here are some ways to deal with it. Have compassion that look, you can have compassion and stand up for yourself. You can have compassion, and report bowling, you can have cam passion, and get them out of your life. So it’s not an either or, I have found, you know, when dealing with or thinking about people in their neighborhood, ultimately, I feel sorry for them. Do you have to spend your life picking out windows to see who your is visiting your neighbor. That’s sad. If you’re driving around, and Christmas morning with kids, claiming that you’re a Christian at 1220 in the morning, on Christmas day, yikes. That for me, I don’t want to live my life like that. So you try to have what compassion you can. And if you are able to have compassion, and I always try see them as that hurt little child. That takes some of the energy out of seeing them as something to be afraid of. As someone, oh, I can relate to the humanity so you can respond instead of react. So what you’re able to again, it’s not excusing any behavior. And this might be really difficult, and it’s okay, if you can’t do it. Stay away. You know, depending on the frequency and severity, keep your distance and it’s a okay to do with it. If maybe it’s at work, you do the task at hand disengage, and you just get away from them. Especially if you’re not getting any support at work. Sometimes, you know, you just keep your distance and that’s okay. Change your perspective, you can try to be overly nice. And I think again, it depends on each individual. But sometimes if you’re overly nice, that can be disarming kill them with kindness, as they said, look them in the eye, you know, it’s a lot harder to dehumanize or be cruel, if someone’s looking you in the eye, look them straight in the eye, have humor picture them naked. They say something insulting, you know, come up with a retort about yourself or like, Haha, or whatever, you know, just try to change a perspective. And again, if you are frightened, then don’t do this, then you just get away, we have other things. But those are just some right off the bat. Now if you’re coping with a regular bully, that’s what I mentioned for kind of infrequently get away. If you have to change something, if it’s that bad, you know, like the parents it took all sticking together to get some removed, maybe you have to get your kid in a new league, or on a different team, if the if it’s happening. Or maybe you need to, if you’re a volunteer, find another role in the organization. Sometimes it’s just it’s not worth it. Just if you have to change do that. Just completely remove them from their life. document every single thing. Now, if you are being bullied at work, I would see talk to HR, see if there’s an anti harassment policy or whatever you have going on, document, write down what happen if you can quote, if they’re witnesses,

ask them to document what they saw or heard, time location, any circumstances that lead to behavior. If you have emails, text, voice messages, anything that can help your case, and then create a timeline. That’s what I did for court. You start with date, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. include as much as possible. Now I would say you take pictures. If you can do a video or audio now, people say you can be sued for that, which I think some things are redonkulous and that’s one of them. So if there’s no way that you can record anything, but be aware of the laws, I mean, if you’re documenting and people aren’t responding then I would say by all means record because if that’s the only way you’re gonna get change, then if you have to threaten with Rico, you know what, I didn’t do anything so I had to I was in fear of my life and no one’s believing me so I’m going to tape it. And this isn’t just for work if this is happening in your life, documented everything with solar I documented all the hypocrisy I’m documenting now. I got your name, your number license plate. And the craziest thing is, I don’t even know some of these people. It doesn’t just have to be a work such situation would definitely document crowdsource van together has their strengths and not took everyone in the class to get the bully to be kicked out of Catholic school. If other people are victims of bullying, they can help you document the abuse. They can share their experiences, and band together, like maybe it’s you have or in a condo and someone who’s awful, or it’s a neighborhood thing. And finally, people will wake up. Or maybe it’s management in your company, you know, my husband talked about a guy. And finally, he left that early retirement program and he constantly bullied people. And they never did anything. They actually their HR has kind of jacked up, they had someone who slept in the car multiple times at work, they fired him and he sued and won, because they didn’t document it. So that’s why I’m talking about documents. But if you band together at work, then you can make change, look at the Catholic Church and the abuse. And all that happens. Because multiple people came together and said enough, we have to do something about that. I’ve read in my research that adult bullies often view being ignored is a sign of weakness, and it encourages them to keep going. So don’t be afraid to speak out, you band together report that the bullying is going on. Make a choice to not feel like a victim. Now that’s not endorsing bullying or saying it’s okay. It’s about your perspective, your frame of mind because if you see yourself as a victim, you tend to sit still and not move forward and not take action. So if you’re like, I’m going to empower myself and band together with people, I’m going to speak up to HR, I’m going to look the bully in the eye. This as long as you don’t see yourself as a victim, so that you can move forward. Don’t take it personally. I mean, I know you’re being targeted. I know how hard that is, you know, when my niece was being bullied, one of the things a principal said to her was, you have to deal with the bullying, you also have to deal with you being able to stand up for yourself and to correct it. And again, standing up for yourself doesn’t mean confrontation, I want to be very clear about that. One of the things you don’t take it personally because you know this person has issues. And what I do is I don’t believe in getting physical but what I do is match the energy. Think of it you know, when someone writes all caps, an email, it’s like they’re shouting. So I talked about earlier about when I walk the neighborhood, I walk tall and I have the energy like you want to do something, bring it on. And that’s the the frame of mine that I’m in when I’m walking and I’m not bothered. Because whether or not you can articulate it, we sense all that. I don’t get physical, but I will match the energy. So if someone is shouting, then I will shout back. If someone is really standing in, in their power than I stand in my power, whatever the energy is, I match it. And that doesn’t have to be speaking. But you just get that frame of mind and you feel that and you own that energy throughout your body. And I’m not getting physical, I want to be very clear there. But you match the energy, don’t reciprocate. I don’t think that that’s a tit for tat is a good thing. And you tell others, you let people know. And then when you do that, you might discover someone else that’s been bullied.

If it’s happening to you, it’s a good chance that it’s happening to someone else. Now what happens if you’re a bystander, and maybe you don’t know this person? What do you do if you see some bullying going on? You can’t confront them, you know, if you maybe feel physically stronger, that you know you have to be very careful that these days you don’t know what someone is is capable of doing. You don’t know if they have a gun. You don’t know what’s going on. So I’m I’m not a huge fan of confronting again, if you have a group of people, that stands up to someone that’s completely different. You can reach out to the person that was bullied in confidence or maybe like if you’re a public and you don’t know the person say hey, are you okay? What can I do to help make them know they’re not alone? That can be a huge positive impact, hey, do you want to go talk to the Target store manager because that was not okay. Or if you’re watching that say it is targets and you go hey, I need to find a manager or security and get someone on that. You know, there there are other options report. depending on what’s happened, you might be able to report anonymously I’m gonna have to do a report on someone because if they’re filling here, what are they doing at work? When you bring the matter to light, it doesn’t always doesn’t mean they’re going to act doesn’t mean they’re always going to honor it. It doesn’t mean that change will happen. But if that incidents recorded, maybe there’s someone down down the line, and that builds and builds and then ultimately something will have to be done with the person. And I always think that it’s worth it. I have screenshots of things where I felt like now I’m just going to hold on to this. But there are things that you can do. Even when you’re in pilot, just always, always be safe, though, I think that that is what is most important. Because again, you just never know how someone’s gonna react. But there are actions that you can take. If you are the bully, and I’d encourage you think through life, if you bullied someone and are able to find them and write a heartfelt note, I read that someone did that with Mean Girls. And it was fascinating about how kids talked about what happened and when she contacted someone who bullied and was mean to her. The woman apologized profusely for I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry, I had a really things are really awful at home and had genuine remorse. And that allows you to heal and it allows them to heal. So if you happen the bully, consider reaching out and know that someone might not want to hear from you. But I think that that’s something that that helps both people. And if you’re doing it right now, and continue to do it, there’s something going on with you. I’m going to encourage you to seek help. It’s never okay to bully. It’s not acceptable. And get support from a professional before it escalates before it gets too bad because you know, sometimes things happen and then you can’t take them back. You read that all the time in a moment of passion, someone harmed someone. And if your feelings escalate and just get out of control. You are the bully seek help. Because there’s some stuff going on, and know that even if you are a bully, you can change. You can let that go you can find ways to heal. You can find ways to move forward and joy in life and that don’t involve harming another. Take actions from today’s podcast. Recognize the signs of bullying and children. Be aware of the types of bullies. Pay attention to any physical, emotional, or mental health, Fallout you may have as a result. Be aware of where you might be bullying someone. formulate a plan for when you’re being harassed. Share you’re being bullied. Get support. Report inappropriate behavior. On our next episode we’re talking about and justice. Go out Clear Your Clutter to create the life you choose deserve and desire. When you clear your clutter, you can share your guests with the world. Sign up for our free newsletter at reawaken your brilliance calm. Even enjoy Clear Your Clutter inside now. Please rate review and share us

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