Dedicated to my class who asked the question
"what battles should we fight, and can we bring duck tape?"
We have all been there. That place and time when the information we are hearing is just too good. Emphasis on "too good". Red hot sizzling information that can make or break a situation, a person's reputation, or put honestly - damage our own social integrity. By your own social integrity that refers to you or someone in your circle that has no filter on what they think, and tend to blurt out every little tiny detail that they know for the whole world to hear. As innocent as the act might seem to some, in fact it can be very harmful to the receiver. Sometimes harmful enough that others lose their jobs, families, self-respect, and unfortunately, some even contemplate unthinkable acts.
Which Battle Are You Fighting?
Trying to stay on top of our emotions and not allow the jibs and jabs that come at us at the most inappropriate times requires mental, as well as emotional work. Being cornered in an office by a think tank of barracudas, or made to look stupid in front of an entire class filled with your peers, neither is a good experience. Bullying takes many shapes, forms, and isn't exclusive to age, gender, or race.
What if we could change the tactics we use to defend ourselves - would that help? I'm very optimistic in that regard, and I think we can, one person at a time. We can defend ourselves in the most basic and private way possible. Just keep what you know private. I know that doesn't stop everyone from gossiping, but it does stop YOU! We have to start somewhere, and YOU looks like a good place to begin. ME TOO! Take for instance the following diagram:
WHAT I KNOW
YOU ARE GOOD THEREFORE WE MUST PUNISH YOU!
Have you ever been punished for being a good person? If you made it through your high school years, the answer is probably yes. Maybe back then you were told to grow a spine, or get over it. That was the answer to all the world's problems. Was it fair? Seriously if you need me to tell you it wasn't fair, go back to high school and try it all over again. Even the most called popular students might find that going back to high school isn't at the top of their list. The only ones who go back teach. It takes a special breed to teach.
The only ones who go back teach.
If your self-respect is in the toilet because of gossip or some rumor that isn't warranted, it really is okay to defend your honor. Not physically of course, but by following the rules. As a society, there are moral principles that help govern our society. We just have to be willing to tap into those governing principles and frankly, take back what was taken away from us. If you don't stand up for your own integrity you will continue to lose out and risk becoming a doormat. Be willing to accept that it will take time and a lot of patience to win your personal battle, especially if you have let the situation continue for some time. It is winnable, never give up. Taping their mouths shut with duck tape is an idea - but probably illegal.
Pick your battles carefully. Fight those battles that need fighting, and leave the rest for those who have no filter on what they think, and tend to blurt out every little tiny detail they know for the whole world to hear. They have their reward.
Pick your battles carefully.
Life does have it's shining moments. Moments when you get to watch the villains in your life get their just reward. It may be that you are no longer in the picture when it does. You may hear whispers of it like a ghost from the past. It all happens without the use of duck tape, name calling, and physical harm. It's time to let it go, and move on with your life.
I think we should leave the duck tape in the classroom. But thanks for asking.