THIS IS NOT about physical assault. It’s about psychological assault, no matter how overt or covert it is.
When we are threatened it’s totally normal to panic; by instinct we switch to flight or fight mode with which to combat the threat. (But there’s a middle-way, a better way, in being given to calmness.)
We feel out of control because we are out of control; someone’s trying to coerce us, or worse. We may not be able to hide our displeasure as we are forced into a mode of perpetual alarm. Our senses are piqued, awareness is heightened, and the gait within our soul is measured by stark negativity. We are teeming with anxiousness.
Being bullied is a state of war when we don’t even want to be at war.
Taking Back Control by Calm
Some may insist it’s impossible to remain calm in such circumstances, and, to a degree, that’s correct.
But as we counter the threatening event by trying to remain calm, we attempt courage, and even if it only partially works we can feel more in control. And we won’t appear so panicked.
Such a practice as calmness in response to a threat is made easier and more effective with practise, so being bullied in an ongoing fashion can be seen as an opportunity to grow in the practical application of courage. God can turn a bad thing into a better thing.
We are blessed to grow, also, in wisdom in countering bullying by calmness.
We shouldn’t expect to become perfect at this overnight, but just trying gives us some control back, something positive to focus on, and it may even cause the bully to rethink their approach when their tactics suddenly appear a little less effective.
The Practiced Art of Calm
A practice blessed in myriad ways, calm is strength for the moment to think and to stand detached of emotion. It’s a true sense of momentary control over our faculties.
We are encouraged to picture a role model; one who is, for the most part, rational, reasonable, realistic, responsible, and logical. It’s who we want to be like: the person calmly in control, not swayed too much by others’ ructions.
We meditate on their example. And we master an attitude based on the imagery our minds paint. Suddenly we are empowered.
The best response to the fear of another person’s attack is calm—the courage to play the ball coming our way on its merits.
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.