How Mindfulness Can Stop Children from Bullying?
Mindfulness can broadly be described as the awareness of the present moment. In this fast paced world, our minds are processing multiple thoughts at any given second.
Why do children adopt a bullying behaviour?
Nearly 49% of the children in the UK have reported to being bullied at schools. Is there any correlation between anxiety and bullying? What triggers bullying in teenagers? Can practicing mindfulness help in minimising the bullying culture? These are some of the questions that we have attempted to answer in this article.
The primary need of a bully is that he craves for power and attention. By causing physical and emotional harm to a person, they cast themselves as a power figure.
This behaviour and need for power over others stems from several reasons. These causes are (but not limited to) stress and emotional trauma, aggressive behaviours and abusive relationships. In certain cases, people who have been bullied in the past can also develop a bullying behaviour.
There can be multiple reasons for anxiety and depression but the most common cause is that we are not able to live in the present moment. Either our past is haunting us or we are constantly worried about the future. By going to therapy what we essentially do is that we try to make peace with our past and future.
Effects of bullying on Victim, Bully and Witness
Bullying has damaging effects on the victim’s personality and scars their self-esteem. They need professional help in order to overcome their prejudices and fears that they have developed as a result of being constantly bullied. However, victims are not the only people who require help in this scenario.
According to Janice Houlihan, Founder of Mindfulschools.org from University of Massachusetts, “Mindfulness practices help the bully, victim and any witnesses involved by developing a deeper awareness, resilience, compassion and a greater ability to process their emotions. In order to completely shutdown bullying, bullies and witnesses also require help.
Practicing mindfulness – A possible solution
Practicing mindfulness regularly helps in alleviating the causes for bullying. Mindful practices are reported to reduce stress levels. They also help in making people more compassionate.
Under most of the cases a person who is bullying is not aware about the consequences, unless it’s too late to do any damage control. Practicing mindfulness makes people more responsible and accountable for their actions.
All these attributes and benefits of mindfulness help people to avoid bullying. It makes them more compassionate and helps them deal with their emotional problems in a positive way that doesn’t hurt them or others.
If we want to put a stop to the bullying culture in schools and raise compassionate individuals, we have to identify the root causes of the behaviour and eliminate it by introducing mindfulness practices in their routines.