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Don’t Be A Lobster


Have you ever been bullied?  Called names?  Second guessed?

A few weeks ago at a birthday party a few of us were talking about kids and trouble with bullying at school.  All of us could remember being bullied or called names at some point. We were all affected by it – some more than others.

This isn’t surprising. This is kids. This is just part of living on our planet.

I heard it one time explained with a lobster example.  Disclaimer: I know nothing about lobsters.  The illustration explained the bucket or box (or whatever they put lobsters in) doesn’t need a lid.  If one lobster tries to climb out other lobsters will climb on them to get out and pull them down.  By pulling each other down to get ahead none of them find freedom.

Why do we act like these lobsters?

This kind of thinking and behavior is terrible and lasts long past childhood.  As adults we just do it differently.  We have mature ways of crawling on others and trying and get to the top.  It can be constructive criticism (without the constructive intent) or can come in the form of gossip.  It can come by treating others as less important than yourself or with prejudice.

All of these bullying actions not only hurt those who they are directed at, but they also hurt us.  They create a negative attitude and have us fighting to establish and protect our self-worth.  They come out of and develop a scarcity mentality instead of an abundance mentality.  They affect us even if we don’t speak them and only think them.  We are affected by the negativity of our words and thoughts even if the person we direct them at doesn’t ever hear them.  Crazy right?

We are the stupid lobsters trying to get somewhere but only falling back into the bucket.

Because we are all hurt and this damage has affected everyone we can’t just be indifferent to others so to remedy this problem. Because so many have been torn down we need instead to fill our thinking, actions, and words with the opposite.

To quit pulling others down we need to actively find ways to push them up.

Starting with the voice inside our head we need to push others up. What we think ends up being what say and how we act.  The crazier thing is that it is proven and preached in religion and business (and probably other areas) this is the way to really get ahead.  We know it and write about it, but few of us really practice it.

This is hard.  I hate to admit it but this is something I struggle with.  Logically as I think through the cute illustrations and type away on the keyboard it all sounds good and clear, but when I look at my life – what I think and what I talk about to friends it sure has more lobster than it should.

So I will work, practice, and pray on my end but I wanted to share with you as well… cause that is what I do here πŸ™‚

Want to practice? Want to leave some good notes about someone else in the comments? (if you are reading RSS join us in the comments)

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  1. jodi jodi

    Hi, what a powerful piece of writing, and perfect timing as my husband and I are changing schools for my 6 year old son next term, because he has had recurring bullying by 10 year olds. It has been very damaging, and they have ganged up on him in the toilets, which has had terrible consequences, and we have not been happy with the way the principal has handled (or not handled) the situation. The school we have chosen is small and much more community minded so lets hope his ‘bully’ fear of school can be put to rest, because it is so sad as a parent when your child doesn’t want to go to school and is ‘sick’ so they don’t have to see the bullies. Unfortunately, the sad thing is that this group will simply find someone else to pick on and therefore the bullying problem will continue…………..

    On another note, I have always felt that my Mum has treated me differently from my younger sister, I was smacked, given the wooden spoon, the strap, hot mustard on my tongue, and my sister was never punished in any of those forms. I moved out of home at 17, and now have 5 children of my own. The sad thing is, that my mum has a ‘closer’ relationship with my sister and her children, and for me and my children, she rarely sees them, hasn’t babysat for well over 2 years (she is young, 56) and even drops presents at the door when we are not home, not even making an effort to see her grandchildren. It affects me, and my older daughter is 13 and she hears from her cousins that they have been to stay at her place,etc and it hurts her a lot. I have brought it up with my mum when she said ‘I wasn’t myself’ at a family function, and was honest about the way she treats my sister’s children ‘differently’ but nothing has changed since then. I try not to let it affect me, but it does hurt me, especially that she doesn’t even know her grandchildren, I have no support at all, and it is something I continue to deal with. I would like advice on changing my thought patterns and how I can better handle this into the future. thank you for reading……sorry if it is a bit too long, it has been bottled up inside for a long time.

    • Jodi, thanks for your comment (it is never too long :)) It is good to meet you! I hope your son has a better experience. It hurts me to hear of this stuff going on. My babies are 5 and 8 and haven’t run into too much yet thankfully. I can relate more than I would like to admit on the internet with your family struggles. I am not sure how to deal with it either and it hurts πŸ™ I have found that it increases my desire to bond with my children and work to make my family (the one I can control a bit better) as good as I can.

  2. Kris Kris

    I am reading my kindle edition of your book and am enjoying it very much. I couldn’t agree more with it. We downsized last year. Very hard thing to do socially. People do think you’re nuts. It makes your priorities so clear and makes all the “stuff” seem so silly. Thank you for writing your book – and I very much enjoy your daily blog. As for the comment above – sounds like you have created your own wonderful family with 5 kids….enjoy them and move forward – don’t waste a second on your mom. You know who is always there for you? GOD is the ever-present.

    • Yay! So glad you are liking it πŸ™‚ It does seem crazy and socially odd, but it is worth it and the people that really matter are the ones that already know you are odd in other ways πŸ˜‰ This is just another odd thing to add to the mix and they will love you anyways…even if they don’t understand you πŸ™‚

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