If you've ever endured any level of teasing, extended and harsh criticism, or abandonment/rejection you may be familiar with the words and actions of a bully. For those without this experience, a bully existing within may be a bit difficult to point out. Either way, the inner - bully is a mindset that destroys confidence and limits full potential. It is the “voice” within belittling ability and holding you back from the good that can be. Confronting the inner - bully requires confronting previous experience, honesty with yourself, and the willingness to change your thinking.
Confronting Previous Experience. The child or adult who has walked through being bullied from others, may have adopted the very opinions of the bully. The term bully means harass and is associated with oppression. Oppression is prolonged cruel or unjust treatment or control. Most often, the inner - bully is the result of learned behavior; it is the product of being constantly bombarded with negative words spoken over you. The brain learns, no matter the content. Confronting previous experiences when it comes to external maltreatment can support in uncovering the root from which the inner - bully was developed. Cutting that root by dis-identifying with the toxicity is vital.
Honesty with Yourself. Being honest with yourself is a doorway to healing. One can’t heal what they hide. Too often, people show up in life with unaddressed hurt, hoping to achieve the desires of their heart. And the thing about that is, they believe that achieving certain goals is going to fix the hurt. In reality, it only masks it. What most don’t know is the eradicating toxicity is just as (if not more) liberating as adding accomplishment. It actually makes those accomplishments even sweeter. The key to remember about being honest with yourself is doing it without judgement. This means you’re not deeming it good or bad, right or wrong. It’s simply recognizing that this is what happened and this is how it impacted my thinking, emotions, and behavior.
Willingness to change thinking. Confronting previous experiences and being honest with yourself about those experiences produces the question: are you willing to change your thinking? Be mindful of this question; it is not asking are you willing to change the experiences or the individuals associated with those experiences. It is a question of personal change. Are you willing to adopt new ways of thinking? Are you willing to forgive others and yourself? Are you willing to receive goodness, abundance, and love? These are choices only you can make. And when you do, you silence that inner - bully; you mute its toxic and critical thoughts because you no longer identify with them. You no longer accept them as truth.
So, are you willing to change your thinking?
Set aside at least 5 minutes to consider the following:
Do you sense an inner - bully within? If so, what experiences can you pinpoint similar words and actions being used towards you?
Do you deal with perfectionism? Are you content with doing your best (without over exerting yourself)?
Do you seek the approval of others beyond how you view yourself?
How open are you to confronting previous experiences, being honest with yourself, and changing your thinking?
Be sure to journal your experience.
This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.