Self EsteemThe way we feel about ourselves has a huge effect on the way we treat ourselves and others, and on the kinds of choices we make. Here are some things you can do to protect, raise, or reinforce your self-esteem.
HOW TO ENHANCE YOUR SELF-ESTEEM
- Spend time with people who like you and care about you
- Ignore (and stay away from) people who put you down or treat you badly
- Do things that you enjoy or make you feel good
- Do things you are good at
- Develop your talents
- Make good choices for yourself, and don’t let others make your choices for you
- Take responsibility for yourself, your choices, and your actions
- Always do what you believe is right
- Be true to yourself and your values
- Respect other people and treat them right
- Set goals and work to achieve them
The following information has been adapted from www.stopbullyingnow.hrsa.gov
Bullying is an aggressive behavior that is intentional and involves an imbalance of power and strength. Usually, it is repeated over time. Traditionally, bullying has involved actions such as: hitting or punching (physical bullying), teasing or name-calling (verbal bullying), or intimidation through gestures or social exclusion. In recent years, technology has given children and youth a new means of bullying each other.
What Is the Definition of Bullying?
A lot of young people have a good idea of what bullying is because they see it every day! Bullying happens when someone hurts or scares another person on purpose and the person being bullied has a hard time defending himself or herself. Usually , bullying happens over and over. Some examples include:
- Punching, shoving, and other acts that hurt people physically
- Spreading bad rumors about people
- Keeping certain people out of a “group”
- Teasing people in a mean way
- Getting certain people to “gang up” on others
Bullying also can happen online or electronically. Cyber-bullying is when children or teens bully each other using the Internet, mobile phones or other cyber technology. This can include:
- Sending mean text, email, or instant messages
- Posting nasty pictures or messages about others in blogs or on Websites
- Using someone else’s user name to spread rumors or lies about someone
- Posting sensitive, private information about another person
Why Do Kids Bully?
There are all kinds of reasons why young people bully others, either occasionally or often. Do any of these sound familiar to you?
- Because I see others doing it
- Because it’s what you do if you want to hang out with the right crowd
- Because it makes me feel stronger, smarter, or better that the person I’m bullying
- Because it’s one of the best ways to keep others from bullying me
Whatever the reason, bullying is something we all need to think about. Whether we've done it ourselves, or whether friends or other people we know are doing it, we all need to recognize that bullying has a terrible effect on the lives of young people. It may not be happening to you today, but it could tomorrow. Working together, we can make the lives of young people better.
Are You Being Bullied?
So you’re being bullied, huh? That can feel pretty awful. But, no matter how bad it makes you feel sometimes, you should know you’re not alone. That’s right, there are plenty of kids all over the world who go through the same things you do every day. And, even though you may feel helpless sometimes, there are a lot of things you and others can do to help stop the bullying. Give these tips a try.
- Always tell an adult. It's hard to talk about serious things with adults sometimes, but they can help put a stop to bullying. Tell an adult that you trust and can talk to - your parents, your teacher, your school counselor, your coach, your neighbor. If you've told a grown-up before and they haven't done anything about it, tell someone else. And if you're afraid to tell an adult that you have been bullied, get another person - like a friend or a sister or brother - to go with you. Having someone else there to support you can make it a lot less scary. Tell the adults exactly what has happened - who did the bullying, where and when it happened, how long it's been happening to you, and how it's making you feel. If you talk with an adult at your school, ask them what they will do to help stop the bullying. It is their job to help keep you safe. Most adults really care about bullying and will do everything they can to help you.
- Stay in a group. If it feesl safe, try to stand up to the person who is bullying you. If you are being bullied online, don’t reply. This may actually make the bullying worse. Instead, be sure to tell a family member or another adult you trust. If possible, block any more communications from this person. (For example, it might be a good idea only to accept messages from people you know.) Save evidence of the bullying. If you get a nasty email, print it out or save it so that you can show it to an adult.
- Join clubs or take part in activities where you’ll meet other kids. Sometimes, it can help to join clubs or take part in activities that interest you. Think about joining a sports team, taking an art class, or joining a scouting group, for example. You can meet other kids who share your interests and you might actually make some good friends!
What NOT To Do If You Are Bullied
- Think it’s your fault. Nobody deserves to be bullied!
- Fight back or bully a person back. This probably won’t make things any better and it might get you into big trouble. Besides, you should try to act better than the person who bullies you.
- Keep it to yourself and just hope the bullying will “go away.” It’s normal to want to try to ignore bullying and hope that it will stop – or hope that the person will start to pick on someone else. But, often bullying won’t stop until adults and other kids get involved. So, be sure to report the bullying.
- Skip school or avoid clubs or sports because you’re afraid of being bullied. Missing out on school or activities that you enjoy isn’t the answer. You have the right to be there!
- Think that you’re a “tattle-tale” if you tell an adult that you’ve been bullied. Telling is NOT tattling! It’s the right thing to do.
- Hurt yourself. Some kids who are bullied get so sad and depressed that they may try to hurt themselves because they think there is nothing else they can do. This definitely isn’t the answer. Talk with an adult immediately and tell them how you are feeling. They can help stop the bullying.
Here is a great formula for conflict resolution:
- Tell the person what you didn’t like
- Tell the person how it made you feel
- Tell the person what you want in the future
- Person responds with what they can do
Post the following three rules: (1) One person talks at a time. (2) The Golden Rule prevails. Treat each person even better than you wish to be treated. (3) You may make decisions and choices about your behavior as long as it doesn't cause a problem for the teacher, your classmates, or yourself.
There's a lot you can do to teach your kids to handle conflict constructively:
- The first step in managing anger and conflict is awareness. Identify your style of dealing with anger, then recognize other OPTIONS:
- Offer alternate times or actions;
- Problem-solve in pairs;
- Tackle the issue together through compromise or collaboration;
- Ignore the problem temporarily;
- Order the necessary action clearly and respectfully;
- Nip the conflict in the bud by creating a setting that produces peace;
- Surprise or humor the angry parties.
- "If the only tools you have are hammers, every problem begins to look like a nail." The words of psychologist Abraham Maslow apply to conflict. If the only tool a child has is fighting, that will be the child's first and only method of coping with conflict.
- Be a good role model. Children learn general approaches to resolving conflict by watching their parents and other adults in their lives. How do you negotiate? When do you give in? How do you see the other person's point of view? Can you afford to admit that you've been wrong?
- Take every opportunity to enhance your child's self-esteem.
- Children are more likely to fight when they feel powerless. Give your child a voice in family discussions and decisions.
- Set aside special times with your children to give them your undivided attention.
- Encourage your children to express all their feelings-feelings of anger or hostility as well as sad and happy feelings. In turn, share your feelings with your children.