Apr 20 2012
by Rick Phillips, Executive Director of Community Matters
This article originally appears on Community-Matters.org.
How many times has an incident or a tragic event stirred your emotions leaving you feeling shocked, saddened or angry? For many of us in today’s 24-hour news and media blitz, this is a fairly common occurrence. The question is this; what do we do when we are emotionally triggered by a disturbing incident or event?
We have a choice. We can be overwhelmed by the size and scope of the issue and do nothing, or we can wake up our courage and do something that contributes to making things better.
Bully, the recently released documentary film provides us with a powerful opportunity to take action and raise our collective voices. Let us choose to stand up and speak up, and be agents of change.
10 Ways You Can Help To Stop Bullying
1. Build healthy relationships with the people around you: your children, children in your community, classmates, co-workers, neighbors, parents, players on your team, etc.
2. Educate yourself. Know that bullying today is more relational and cyber than it is physical. Read more, go on-line, dialogue with others, etc. Bullying is just one form of mistreatment. Know what’s not OK, what hurts others (physically or emotionally).
3. Sharpen your communication skills so you can connect with others, understand them; keep the channels of communication open.
4. Walk the talk – don’t bully others. Be kind. Use your influence with care and compassion.
5. Be observant and notice what others say and do, and don’t ignore mistreatment.
6. Intervene. Stand up and speak up to mistreatment. Voice your concern or objection. Suggest an alternative or get help if it’s bigger than you are.
7. Refuse to join in. If all else fails and it doesn’t feel safe to intervene, walk away and report it when appropriate.
8. Offer support to the person(s) being targeted. Show that you care.
9. Advocate. Be a voice for constructive change in priorities, policies, and practices, in schools and other organizations. Make “positive social-emotional climate” a top priority.
10. Know that individual action matters and starts a chain reaction of positive change.
When we take action and speak up, we are initiating change. Together our actions can go a long way to creating a more just and more peaceful world.
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”
- John Quincy Adams