Adult bullies come in many shapes and sizes. They might even be someone close to you who you didn’t think was a bully at all. In any relationship when you feel like a person is using intimidation tactics, emotional or financial extortion, aggressive behavior or communication, or commands, you are probably dealing with a Class Act Bully. Professional counseling from a counselor in Orlando can help you identify these types of toxic relationships and people in your life. You also will learn successful ways to handle aggressive, hostile people, and how to protect yourself from their constant daggers.
A bully that you are forced to interact with regularly, such as a co-parent, co-worker or boss, a salesperson, or even a spouse, can truly deplete your energy. Even if you try to always be prepared when dealing with this type of nasty person, you can still find yourself caught off guard. The sad reality is that no matter how this person acts, they really are powerless, and very small inside. They use control tactics, threats, aggressive language or behavior, and extortion to feel like they have an upper hand. They don’t care about hurting people because they usually have a lot of hurt within themselves. This doesn’t mean you should feel sorry for the bully. Any great counselor in Orlando will tell you that you can’t influence these people and the best thing you can do is keep your distance whenever you can.
These people are always waiting to pick a fight or engage. Most of the time, they wake up with a chip on their shoulder and people often describe them as “grumpy.” At work, keep it to business and avoid being alone with them. In your private life, eliminate people like this if you can or limit communication to the bare minimum.
This is something a bully will hate about you. As hard as they try to stir you up to gain a power position, you should work even harder to stay cool. There is no reason to ever stoop to their level. They are usually very emotionally immature, underdeveloped in their communication skills, and almost always have a lack of self-awareness.
Keeping a paper trail might be necessary in some situations with people like this. Especially if it has to do with a work issue, or a co-parent that is verbally abusive. Tell friends and family, or speak to a counselor, or therapist about what you are experiencing. There is safety in numbers and evidence.
If you set a boundary with a bully, don’t let them cross it. Establish and verbalize the consequences for crossing your lines. If the bully chooses the behavior, then they also choose the consequence.
Do not be delusional to think that if, all of the sudden, the bully is being nice to you, they have changed. Unless they have made a sincere apology for their past transgressions on you (and can list them!), and you have also witnessed actions to follow, then you should never trust that this person will not bully you again. To force respect and be emotionally detached, keep communication professional, detached, and without emotion.
An adult bully can be disguised as the nicest person. It could be the firefighter next door, the college professor, or the soccer coach. No matter what, anytime you witness or are the victim of bullying tactics, do not make excuses for this person. That will only lead you to letting your guard down and you could put yourself in harms way again.
These types of aggressive, hostile, threatening people often deal with serious underlying issues. Clearly, they often struggle with anger management, but there could also be major mental health issues going on too. Without proper treatment to regulate their moods or reactivity levels, they will most likely never change. Do not allow yourself to be their punching bag or enable them. You do not need to allow their mental health issues to become your own. Talking to a counselor will help you understand how mental health issues such as bi-polar, or personality disorders, like narcissism, have symptoms like Aggression, anger, or bullying.
The best thing you can do for yourself is to identify these people right away. If they are a loved one, determine the best course of action for yourself. People often seek divorce because they are married to an aggressive spouse who controls them. Even changing jobs because your boss is a bully could be the right decision for you.
A counselor in Orlando will help you come up with the best plan for your situation. You will feel stronger when you gain support, tell others, and use strategies to eliminate this toxic relationship and person from your life. Call to make an appointment with a therapist at Orlando Thrive Therapy at 407-592-8997.
Heather Oller is a licensed Orlando therapist at Orlando Thrive Therapy, Coaching & Counseling who specializes in counseling Orlando couples, individuals, and families who are seeking changes in their lives. She has been a mental health professional for over 17 years and is a practicing Orlando counselor that specializes in conflict resolution for couples. You can contact her for an appointment or call 407-592-8997 for more information.