Life after school bullying
Nowadays, we often talk about bullying. For those who lived through it, it’s a pretty traumatic experience that has several facets. Shame, at first. That of not being able to be appreciated by one’s classmates and that of not daring to speak about it for fear that the ‘rejection disease’ grows further.
Powerlessness, because we do not know why, all of a sudden, our world has collapsed and we cannot change anything. Finally, rejection, and this type is very violent, because when it’s a class that ignores a person, pushes her, insults her, even uses more aggressive gestures, it is no longer the rejection of a person but that of the society in which we will live in for a year or more.
I experienced this situation when I was twelve, while some thought I was aggressive or antisocial, I was actually quite destroyed inside. From these insults I developed in adolescence a savage and warlike character to protect me. But inside of me, it was quite a different story. A deep tear was created in my universe. Over the course of the day and jostling for a year, every human became a potential threat. There was no goodwill, a hello would inevitably end in mockery or insult, unfortunately even from teachers who followed the same energy without realizing it.
Each day I shut a little more. I got to laugh at myself so that others could not hurt me, hoping in despair that this black humor would change their perception. At the level of self-esteem, it’s the worst protection mechanism we can choose, because it turns from self-insult, to personal devaluation, then to the degradation of self-image. After this year in a class where more than half ignored me and the other half verbally abused me and sometimes kicked or seized my bag, I did not consider human contact as before.
The next class did not have the same people and was very nice, however fear had already settled. It was rooted so deeply that my biggest game was to challenge the walls and tapestries to be more invisible than me. This fear was so visceral that these new classmates took a year and a half to be able to discuss with me without me being suspicious of them and their intentions. It must have seemed strange to them, but I could never have put into words the fear I had then.
With time, I rebuilt my relationships with other human beings, I have a circle of quality friends and very pleasant social interactions. Also, I realized that it was the lack of self-esteem that led others to “walk all over me”. Assuming that I chose and arranged this life, to live an awakening through emotions and experiences, I also had to make peace with myself for having imposed this suffering on myself to grow and learn. It’s one of the experiences that led me to the path of forgiveness.
Yet knowing this, traces are sometimes still present, and they have the ability to resurface in the most unlikely situations. Lately, I found myself on the “benches” of a different school. An ephemeral university addressing topics such as education, self-perception, coaching, the ability to speak in public, to create one’s projects, one’s business, consciously and in order to bring about positive change in our world through concrete action. In any event the experience is fascinating and the attendees leave rich in life experiences. But to my surprise, I found myself facing old reflexes that I had not seen for a long time.
These reflexes are those of protection by isolation. Where my reflex seemed unlikely to me, was that these people, who were there with me, were actually of goodwill and non-judgmental even showing their vulnerability gracefully. So how did this resurface? Simply by a human desire common to all: the desire to belong to a group, to feel accepted.
Getting out of these patterns or old habits requires attention to these changes of emotional states that pull you down and force you to choose to change reality. Indeed, we could dive, find these feelings of non-acceptance, this perception of rejection and once again feel like the victim. We will then have the perfect excuse to declare that “nobody understands me, likes me”. But we can also decide that this experience has already been lived in the past and there is no need to go back. That’s what I did. It took me a short time-out to come to terms with myself then I chose to change reality. Here is how you can do the same:
Ask yourself: is the discomfort real or was activated by the resemblance to a past situation?
Indeed the neurons being rather of temperament to take the first shortcut, they’ll point to the similarity in which you had the strongest emotional impact in your internal archives.
Ask yourself: since those mishaps have you had experiences that contradict this experience?
In my case, being a lifelong learner, I as an adult had the pleasure of training with very interesting people, some of whom have even become friends.
Decide if the most recent positive experiences can be your new reference.
In that respect you start reprogramming your reality by making an update of your neural references (like a software update).
Take the time to breathe and decide that your reality changes right now!
By changing my perception and opening myself to a new reality, I was surprised to see people coming to meet me the next morning with a big smile and start conversations with me. By making the choice to welcome new opportunities in my life, I changed my energy, my perception, thus my path.
And you? What do you want to change?
Enjoy bending your reality