Monday, 27 January 2014

Being misunderstood

The impact of being bullied and being misunderstood runs so deeply that it can make or break you in life. In this blog, I do not really want to go into all the ugly details, or make light of the devastation of being misunderstood, but communicate more a story and something to think about.

You know, sometimes we just need to take a moment and look at our own unhealthy quick judgements (this can be about others or ourselves). I know that I am sometimes quick to judge, and misread situations and people, and am too on a journey to change my worldview and mindset. We are all learning and growing as we allow ourselves to open our minds.

I guess by being more careful, respectful (and in many cases just taking the time to listen and get to know the person) a new understanding will open up. We are all so uniquely different and changing our own worldview takes time and awareness.

I was listening to a talk back radio station the other day on one of my trips to work, and heard an interview from one of Australia's top journalists, Lisa Wilkinson and her story about being bullied. She was a very good ballerina and that was her aim in life, however she was bullied and it became physical. When she finished year 12 she can remember thinking... "I can now leave all this behind and start afresh". A really powerful story .

I was misunderstood at school for being different. In fact the bullying and teasing got so bad that at one stage I was about to move schools and my Mum had to intervene. I spent my time as a volunteer in the library in the morning, just to get away from the girls, this was all when I was in year 7.

For the rest of my school years the relationships were always strained and even now people walk by, which is ok. I sometimes wonder what it was that I represented or did that upset them so much to treat me or make this judgement on me? Hurting people hurt people...

I was brought up in a middle class household of teachers from an English background. I was always singing, dancing and playing the Flute. I was so musical creative, strong willed and had a slight English accent. I was told I was posh, didn't fit in, stuck up, full of myself and all the horrible words that people say to others when someone is different.

During my high school years, I always struggled with being different, I was not sporty, cool, beautiful enough or wore the right clothes. I was independent had different interests and influences and many times felt so alone and lacked confidence in who I was. There were only a handful of friends, that loved me and stood by me all through these years. To this day we are all still really close friends.

Being totally misunderstood can be heart breaking, and it doesn't stop when you leave school... It happens throughout yr life. The devastating thing about being misunderstood is that people make quick judgements if you do not fit in with their worldview, they bully and use intimidation towards you as YOU do something that unsettles their world.....

It might even be a challenge..... Yes, that is it YOU challenge their narrow mindset of their world view and they feel uneasy and unsettled.... something is happening and they do not know how to handle it.

Bullying and being misunderstood happens all through our life, it never stops.....I will not get into the horrible mess, but many of my decisions and actions have been a backlash of wanting to fit in and be popular and find my way in life. This is not an uncommon story.

I am not saying that I can justify my actions through being misunderstood, and I carried all this crazy stuff, but it trickles into your life from time to time... Sometimes at the crucial decision making time!!! Anyone with me on this ?

I know this story is not uncommon to so many people and I can write so much more on this topic and even the stories.

The thing that I have noticed with life is that so many of the people who were misunderstood at school have taken time to heal, but have become some of the most influential spokespeople in our society

I guess many of my passions and focuses in life, come from lessons....... then go from strength to strength. It hasn't been a smooth journey, but I have learnt and grown and gained skills, grown in my faith and gained tools to better manage situations. It's about empowering people with skills to overcome the spoken lies.

So at the end of the day... stay true to who you are, and if you challenge other people through holding true to your core beliefs and are happy then let them go.... Easier said than done... I know!!

Hope this makes sense....

Peace xx

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