“Hello and Welcome to Episode 44 of ‘Tuesday Choose Day’, your inspirational weekly post.
My aim here is to inspire you to feel more positive and more confident within yourself so you can find your way to overcome anxiety and create the change you want to happen in your life.” I’m offering you here every Tuesday straight to your inbox empowering strategies to help you to take control, feel better and feel good!
Today’s Inspiration To Brighten Your Day…
As a loving parent, you want your child to feel happy and safe when they are not with you. You want them to learn that they can defend and take care of themselves in what can be at times a big, scary world. If your child is facing bullies at school, the anxiety for you in not being able to help enough, when your instinct is to protect them, can be overwhelming and just horrid.. Here’s how to equip your child with the skills to deflect bullies. These suggestions will help you and your child to steer clear of this anxiety when you send your child off to school in the morning.
As a child myself, I was bullied horribly at school in the first year of secondary. I was a victim at home and I carried that victim identity with me. Without even realizing this, it was like I hung a sign around my neck that said ‘easy target’. My posture was closed and hunched a little, my voice was hesitant with a stammer. Through my lack of confidence and self esteem, I was screaming out ‘Come bully me!’ I didn’t understand then that bullies target children who appear on edge, who are unsure and insecure within themselves.
Here’s how to teach your child to deflect bullies
- Encourage them to walk tall with their head up and eyes wide open. Bullies notice children who look down a lot and who are uncomfortable with making eye contact.
- Practice helping your child to hold eye contact, because bullies will tend to steer clear if they look them straight in the eye.
- Help your child to identify areas where bullies tend to strike – often away from adult visibility. Locker rooms, toilets, corridors, journeys to and from school are all hot spots. Talk to them about how they might keep themselves safer in these areas, so that they can avoid being alone and unseen.
A child with high self-esteem will not be a target for bullies…
- Your child’s self-esteem is a measure of how lovable and like-able they feel. The self-confidence feeds directly from growing self-esteem. When a child feels that you love and accept them unconditionally, they find their courage to rise to any challenge. This develops a belief that they are capable. Take every opportunity to both tell and show your child how great they are. Lavish them with hugs and praise and spend time with them.
- Remember that children spell love T.I.M.E. (You might like to read Episode 13 for more on this here’s the link https://lisaskeffington.com/how-to-boost-self-esteem-this-christmas/
- Encourage your child to make many different friends. Welcome their friends to your home and get to know them. Whilst just one good friend can seem all a child needs, when that friend is ill or away, your child may feel lost and lose confidence. A loyal group of friends can be a fantastic force field against outside bullies. It also allows for flexibility in who your child chooses to spend time with, as friendship dynamics change.
- Help your child to communicate confidently by speaking slowly and clearly.
- Make it okay for your child to speak up and say how they feel at home. They will find their courage to be assertive with their peers. Help your child to understand that aggressive people who intimidate and shout, lack the inner confidence to say how they feel calmly. Whereas assertive people who communicate what is it important to them, have learned to be comfortable in defending themselves and their rights.
If your child is being bullied, they are not a victim.
Help them to understand this.
Help your child to understand that focusing on the injustice, simply creates a feeling of powerlessness within them which keeps them locked in a victim mindset and makes it easier for bullying to continue. Instead, equip them to find a way through it. Help them to find a way to be less focused on the situation.
Most times, bullies are hurting inside and don’t know how to ask for the help they need. Usually they are desperately seeking control, to compensate for some way in which they are feeling overpowered and insecure in their lives. Help your child to understand this, so that they accept that being bullied is not their fault.
With love and light x
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Lisa Skeffington, Anxiety Expert – Anxiety Help Bournemouth