In a world filled with high-pressure, over-competitive professionals it is hard to believe that being nice can get you anywhere. Thankfully, as history would have it, it does. TV personality, Lisa Wilkinson talks about being bullied out of her dream to become a ballerina and the power of coming full circle – realising that the same girl who had bullied her in high school had in the end grown up to be a woman filled with sadness and regret.
There has been a lot of talk in the media lately about the importance of educating our children to say no to bullying, and to block cyber trolls who hide behind keyboards to get a reaction out of their peers. Rather than always focusing on the negative behaviour of the bully and how to react, it is also important to show our children why being the ‘nice guy’ will in the end leave you at the top. Here are my top 3 reasons why:
1. Insecurities are loud. You hear it over and over again; bullies tend to attack others to cover their own insecurities and avoid having to deal with the true cause of their own pain. Of course, this isn’t always true, but it would be true for the vast majority of all encounters I have ever had with brazen and sometimes nasty people. As painful as it may be at the time, staying true to yourself and killing them with kindness will always result in you coming out on top. C.S Lewis famously said: Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny.
2. Silence is a powerful weapon. We have all been in situations where we know we are right and we rage against the machine to prove to the person who is treating us poorly that they are wrong. But, at the end of the day, does it really get us what we want – an apology? In most cases it just fuels the fire and empowers the negative behaviour. By remaining calm and failing to emotionally react, you remove the risk of saying something you will later regret by lashing out in the heat of the moment. Remember, silence can’t be misquoted.
3. Loyalty over fear. There will always be leaders that dictate rather than lead. They gather people around them who deliver results out of fear, not inspiration. This kind of success will never last – it doesn’t foster an environment of learning, creativity or collaboration. On the flip-side, being kind hearted and genuine doesn’t mean you fail to lead, it is about understanding the difference between getting what you want because you have demanded it and inspiring others to deliver more than you could have dreamed.
What do you think – can bullying interfere with reaching your goals?
Join the conversation with me on Twitter @ceovanessa