There’s a big fat bully at the door, door, door,
He will catch me by my collar,
Take away my dollar,
So I won’t go to Billy’s any more more more.
Remember this ditty we played as kids clapping our hands, or using it as rounds. But bullying has always been an issue.
The advt. World very conveniently shows mom’s home cooked Paav Bhaji, overcoming the bully. I remember our neighbour’s son, would throw rubbles, or sand on my older daughter’s head, she would come home crying. When younger daughter joined the play group and he did that to her, she looked him in the eye for a minute whacked him and coolly walked away. The boy was stunned he just gapped back at my daughter, but never once troubled her again.
So what is bullying, it is unwanted, aggressive behaviour among school aged children. Well I think it lingers on to adulthood. This usually involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behaviour is repetitive or potentially repetitive, and impacts both the bullied and the bully sometimes with serious lasting problems.
Kids who bully use their power such as physical strength, access to embarrassing information, or popularity – to control or harm. Power imbalances can change over time and situation despite involving the- same people.
It would include making threats, spreading rumours, attacking someone physically or verbally and excluding someone from a group on purpose. If I were to classify bullying it would be.
- Verbal bullying writing or saying mean things
- Name calling
- Inappropriate sexual comments
- Threatening to cause harm
- Social bullying
- Tarnishing reputation
- Socially isolating someone
- Publicly embarrassing people
- Physical bullying.
- Making rude gestures
- Destroying property.
Bullying can occur anywhere, during or after school hours. Playgrounds buses neighbourhood, most people can change or rather stop. Most bullies are victims of bullying themselves. It then becomes a defence tactic
Usually bullies are lonely and have low self esteem. Bullying gives them sense of importance and power. Many of them have issues and come from disturbed family background. Many bullies deal with issues like jealousy, rage; they are not able to handle the popularity of another person
Bullies tend to be part of pack. Their confidence sags when they are alone. There is a need to impress and draw attention. The target of the bully is usually different in some way.
These bullies are found in work space too. And then it is terrible to handle it. Imagine having to put someone who perceives threat, or perceives that someone out shine them and take steps to block them out. The workplace bullies tend to be nit-picky and have a sense of superiority about their skills and abilities. They are affected by pressure and stress and have to be on high performance most of the times. Bullying could range from yelling, intimidating, criticism, personal insults, or sabotage vicious gossip or taking credit for another’s work. Women tend to be more subtle as compared to men.
Since dealing with school yard bullies has been bashed enough I am tackling dealing the workspace bully. First thing we need to realize it is not about us, it is about the bully. Then we stay calm, the next bit would be to build relationship with other workers so that there is a support system in place when the bully turns on you, or there is back up just in case the bully tried to turn people against you. When it comes to work, work has to be really good so that the bully’s behaviour does not seem justified.
Keep a journal of what happened, when and who were present just in case the problem escalates there is documentation just in case you need to make a case. Seeking help if you think you are being bullied is okay. Seeking help is okay one try a mentor advocate, friend, or legal advocate who specializes in bullying and inappropriate or discriminator y behaviour in workplace. But when sharing with the human resource department of the company one has to be careful, because they are working for the company and not you. They are counsellors and not obliged to keep everything said in confidence
Counselling may also help to deal with stress, especially if the bullying is affecting one physically and mentally. An outside work network also helps in addition to having a strong hobby. Knowing the companies inappropriate behaviour and occupational law helps to deal with these situations.
At the end of the day, though a bully can change they will not. We have no control over the bully’s willingness to accept a behavioural issue, but we can work to manage the situation as best as we can.