Continuing our discussion of bullying in the workplace…
If you or someone you know is unable to cope with the pressures of the demands that are being placed on you by one or more individuals where you work, then there are some failsafe responses and actions that you can take with that person who is bullying you.
Kendall Van Blarcom (www.kvanb.com) offers his professional consulting services to those individuals who would like to achieve a higher level of personal comfort, especially if you have experienced bullying in the workplace. Kendall has a proven track record of helping family members who are trying to cope with someone who’s being bullied, as well as those situations where children, teens, and adults, regardless of sexual orientation, are constantly being bullied at their workplace.
Being Polite is Not an Option When You’re Dealing With a Bully
While you were growing up, you might have had an authority figure in your life who told you to be polite to others that you work with. Although that is a good basic principle, when someone is threatening you with bullying comments, actions, and downright torment, you need to be prepared to defend yourself. Being polite is not in the equation of getting a bully to back down.
What Bullies Don’t Like
Bullies don’t like to be interrupted. They also don’t like their victims to just shrug their shoulders and walk away. This infuriates that person who is trying to control the situation and control you by creating fear and doubt. Have you heard the story about turning the question back on to the person who’s asking the question? In other words, if the bully says to you, “I didn’t like the way that you weren’t listening to me today!” Your response could be, “You didn’t think that I was listening to you?” Do you see how you just took the bully’s question and turned it back around on him?
Another Verbal Response for Your Arsenal of Protection Against Bullies
Let’s try another verbal response that will show the bully that you’re not intimidated by his or her insinuations or demands. For simplicity’s sake, let’s say that the bully is a guy. The next time he begins tossing his words in your face to make you mad, interrupt him! Yes, I said interrupt him. Bullies hate being interrupted. Next, instead of answering a question, just say his name real loud. Bullies don’t respond well to the fact that you’re saying his name when he is expecting a response from you. Then just pause for a moment and look him square in the eye.
Try any of the following phrases after you say his name and when he begins to babble all over again:
“Breathe, why don’t you?”
“Have you heard what you just said to me?”
“I don’t think I understand that; could you repeat it?”
Every time you interrupt a bully, and you ask a question, you throw him off course. He won’t like it, but it now puts you in control. But it’s not just about control; it’s about taking your life back and getting this person to leave you alone. The longer you try to avoid him, be polite to him, agree to meet him later, or do something that he requests, the longer he’s gonna be around.
There are hundreds and maybe even thousands of situations where you or a loved one will be threatened by a bully. It’s not a matter of asking if you will be confronted. It’s a matter of when.
The good news is that you don’t have to go through this alone. Or if someone that you know is being bullied or you even sense that they’re being bullied, then try to call a halt to this as soon as possible. If you can’t do it yourself, then contact a personal counselor such as Kendall Van Blarcom, who can help. Remember, it’s your life, and you have the power to change any outcome that is challenging you today. Have you ever been bullied by someone?