Are Your Thoughts Bullying You?

By: Nicholas Ward

In recent history, bullying has become a hot topic in schools, sports teams, and even in adult life. Often bullies zap you of your energy, rob you of your self-esteem, and possibly cause you to view yourself through a different lens. You probably at some point in your life have been bullied by someone or something, in some form or fashion. Many people are simply unaware of how our own thoughts can bully us.

At times, you are being bullied by a certain thought or multiple negative thoughts. On average, you have two negative thoughts every minute of the day. That adds up to 195 days of negativity throughout your year. Studies show that a positive mindset leads to more productivity, higher earnings, and increased success.

Here are a few tips and tactics that will help prevent you from falling victim to those pesky negative thoughts that can bully you into complete negativity:

Becoming Aware

So how do you punch that thought that is bullying you in the mouth? First, be aware or recognize the thought that is bullying you. Awareness is the first step to changing your mindset. When you recognize that recurring negative thought, replace it with a positive one. Much like a coach subs a player out of a game to energize the team or change the momentum of the game, you are doing the same thing, only with your thoughts.

Subbing Thoughts

After recognizing the negative thought, you sub in a positive one. Positive self-talk allows you to change your thought process. If you can consistently recognize and replace negative thoughts, you actually change the protein patterns in your brain and create a pattern of the same thoughts, eventually changing your mindset. Daily doses of positivity compound over time. To change your reality, you must first change your thought process, one thought at a time.

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Getting Started

Start your day by writing down three things for which you are grateful. This begins your day on a positive note and will jumpstart your positive thought process for the day. When you feel like negative thoughts are prevailing, take a short gratitude walk to center your mind and focus on things that are positive in your life. Remember that there are certain things that are simply out of your control. One thing that we always have complete control of is how and what we think.

“It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.” — Epictetus

The stoic philosopher Epictetus, born a slave, who later became one of the most sought after thinkers who was known for influencing many leaders with his teachings, was quoted as saying, “It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.” We create the world around us with our thoughts and actions. What kind of world are you creating for yourself?

Nicholas is a friend of mine who will be guest blogging from time-to-time. Take a look at his bio below. Thanks Nicholas!

Bio for Nicholas:

Nicholas Ward is a high school teacher and wrestling coach. Nick has been teaching since 2006. He has served in many different roles, ranging from teaching physical education and health to working with at-risk students to teaching advanced level history and government classes.

Prior to entering the education field, Nick served in the Missouri Army National Guard where he achieved the rank of sergeant, earned the coveted air assault badge, served as a 13B cannon crewmember and as a full time retention and recruiting NCO in the Kansas City area.

Nick is a 2002 Northwest Missouri State University graduate. He holds certifications in physical education and social studies. Nicholas holds a Master’s degree in Educational Administration and Supervision from William Woods University and is currently pursuing a Master’s degree from the University of Missouri in Positive Psychology.

Currently, Nick serves as a social studies teacher and wrestling coach at Kearney High School, where he helps run a highly successful program that has produced multiple state champs, All-Americans, and state trophy teams. His coaching and teaching career has included stops in Plattsburg, Versailles, and Lathrop prior to landing in Kearney, Missouri.

In his free time, he enjoys spending time outdoors, spending time with family, and watching sporting events. Coach Ward resides in Plattsburg, Missouri. His daughter, Alex, is a student at Academie Lafayette in Kansas City.