I don’t know about you, but I’ve got a strictly no tolerance policy on bullying.
I remember one of my first jobs in a call centre. It was fricking horrible and I’ve never worked in such a toxic, cluster-fuck-of-a-place since – not even in my career in advertising!
Anyway, there was this supervisor who had way too much BDE and acted like he was our overlord (which in call centre terms, he kind of was). If you wanted to get off the dirty data entry desk and onto the much sexier call operator desk (where you would get your own cool headphones), you had to play his game. However playing his game meant sucking up to him and being his bitch, which he rewarded by stamping on your ego with constant snide jokes and remarks in front of your colleagues, on a daily basis.
This bullying continued for a while until staff complained about his tactics, and he got quietly ‘moved on’, which was good, because we all know that bullying will continue if no one does anything about it.
Which is why being a bully, is the perfect metaphor for anxiety.
It can put you down and make you feel like you’re not good enough. It finds your weak spots and prods at them, on a daily basis. Many people stay quiet and suffer its attentions in silence … and arguably that just means anxiety’s bullying continues and gets worse.
Which brings me to my point: you have to call out your bully.
Because if anxiety was a real person, constantly pushing you around, controlling you and telling you that you were a failure, why would you tolerate them?
The answer is you wouldn’t. You’d find some way of dealing with them, for self preservation.
I know it’s not that easy, you can’t exactly punch anxiety in the face, or run away from it.
But you can face it. Talk about it’s shitty attitude to a colleague or a friend. And take steps to give yourself a break and some much-needed self care.
Ultimately, bullies are cowards. They hate it when someone calls them out.