Bullying is the use of force or coercion to abuse or intimidate others. The behavior can be habitual and involve an imbalance of social or physical power. It can include verbal harassment or threat, physical assault or coercion and may be directed repeatedly towards particular victims, perhaps on grounds of race, religion, gender, sexuality, or ability. Wikipedia
There are many different types of bullies. Most all of us have experienced some type of bullying in our lives at some point. You can run across a bully almost anywhere. Kids experience bullying primarily at school or in the neighborhood but also can experience it from siblings and even parents. Adults tend to experience it more in the workplace or on the street and sometimes even within their own families. In my opinion a bully is a mentally weak individual that preys on others. Their own lack of self esteem is falsely inflated by putting some else down. They don’t have enough confidence in their self and their ego kicks in and swells through the intimidation of others giving them a feeling of self worth. There are many reasons why people bully. It may very well be the environment they were raised in or that they have been victims themselves. Although we may feel sorry for them, this is not the reason I bring up this topic.I want to identify the types of bullying and then reinforce the benefits of Martial Arts in stopping it.
VERBAL: Name-Calling Teasing This type of bullying can be even more humiliating and dehumanizing than any fight. It can often be one of the most devastating types because it is pointed at the inner world of a person. SOCIAL: Spreading rumors, leaving people out on purpose, breaking up friendships. Social bullying is very similar in effect to verbal bullying. PHYSICAL: Hitting, Punching, Shoving Unlike girls, boys usually prefer a more direct method. The actual pain and intimidation caused by physical bullying is designed to humiliate and frighten a person. They do it because they want to look smarter, cooler or stronger than their victims. CYBER BULLYING: Use of the Internet, Mobile Phones or Digital Technologies to harm others reputations. We are seeing Cyber bullying more and more these days and the adverse effects it is causing in our society. To me one of the most cowardice acts is for someone to hide behind a keyboard and attack another’s reputation in a format that millions may see all in an effort to pump their egos and cause harm to others in the process.
What can we do?
Let’s remember that a bully’s goal is to get a reaction out of you. Our best defense is having the confidence in oneself that we do not allow this to happen. Through Songahm Martial Arts we can accomplish this confidence through the hard work and dedicated training our student’s experience. The first step is learning how to be assertive and tell people how you feel. Walk with a purposeful confidence and a don’t you dare mess with me attitude. Second is developing a self worth that will not allow others words or actions to intimidate us and hurt our concept of self. And let’s not forget the all important need to be able to physically defend oneself if the need should ever arise.
Let us hope as martial artist that the skills we possess never have to be put to the test. Let us have the confidence to walk away from a situation if at all possible. If we do ever have to use our skills to defend our self let us not use any more force than necessary. Let us also train the right way with 100% effort and conviction both mentally and physically. When we accomplish this we will defeat the bully no matter their choice of attack.