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Why are some people so mean to ...

Sharon Leake

People, by nature, are social beings. In fact, without cooperation or the ability to get along with one another we would not have the 'civilized' society that we live in today. Security is something that is desired by everyone, so it is important for us to be comfortable with ourselves. As a massage and bodywork therapist it is important to ensure that my clients feel secure. We have a need to feel accepted by our peers or social groups and to feel unique or special. So why do so many people belittle, demean, or intentionally hurt others?

People naturally make self comparisons (wealth, attractiveness, intelligence, etc.). These comparisons can either make us feel better or worse about ourselves. Most folks generally prefer to feel good about themselves and are thus prone to make downward comparisons of others. This is especially true of people who have been belittled or insulted by others themselves. So they in turn will belittle, or make someone feel or look bad in an attempt to make themselves feel or look better. This is based off of the social comparison theory. Most of us have the impulse control to keep our slights or jests to ourselves, but some show their true feelings in subtle, or not so subtle, ways.

Using Freudian thought here.. People deal with negative views about themselves by perceiving others even more negatively. Research has actually discovered that ego-threats or an attack on someone's self-esteem is the fuel for a lot of aggressive behavior. The bottom line is, people tend to lash out at others when their self-worth is threatened. When someone insults you or tries to make you feel or look bad, it actually says more about how they feel about themselves.

People who are happy and feel good about themselves edify or lift others up, never intentionally cause another person pain or harm. Some people may inflict cruelty or harm upon others as a way to mask their insecurities and feel a sense of control. Maybe they've experienced pain or trauma in their past that they don't know how to handle, so consequently they dish it out to others in an attempt to feel better. Confidence is silent, insecurities are loud.

Remember, there is no use in sinking to their level. You are not a fish, so don't take the bait! You don't need anyone else's approval; don't accept their negative opinion of your value. Smile and move on. Do not let the opinions of people with small minds hinder you from your purpose or dream.

I truly strive to treat everyone of my clients special and give credence to their concerns. Just because something may not seem relevant or important to us doesn't mean that it shouldn't be or isn't to someone else. My work with ASD/SPD and as an Orthomolecular Nutrition Consultant and Bodywork Therapist has taught me to view every individual as a unique being, with unique needs, unique physiology/anatomy and unique biochemistry.

Words can have lasting effects and may even be more hurtful than physical pain. In fact, the emotional pain may even be somaticized. Be sure to taste your words before spitting them out. As someone who is in the profession of healing, I want to choose words that heal, not hurt. Insecure people hurt or put others down to feel confident. Confidence is not walking into a room with your nose in the air, thinking you are better. It is walking into a room with others and not feeling the need to compare yourself to them in the first place.

"Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers." - Ephesians 4:29

"We have a tendency to want others to be a finished product while we give ourselves the grace to evolve." - T.D. Jakes


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