If there is one thing I have never understood it is people who purposely try to make others look bad so they look good. It is a truly an unusual behavior to me. Maybe it was growing up playing team sports, where you rely on everyone to be their best; most importantly you encourage it, because no one will win a game by themselves. Maybe it was the way my parents raised me, to take responsibility for my actions, to be honest about my mistakes, and to help others.
Or, maybe it is the knowledge that groups of people thrive when they work together, not tear each other down. No matter what the reason is, I think most of us would agree that these people can be very toxic. Sadly though, at some point most of us will interact with these types of people and it is important to know how to deal with them, so remember…
- You determine your response to these types of people, so make it a level headed one. No one wants to find out someone is talking bad about them or to stand there while they try to make you look bad in front of others but blowing up will not solve it. I tend to think these types of people are purposely trying to push your buttons and get a heated reaction from you, so don’t let them. You can definitely still show strength and power with a calm conversation explaining to the individual why what they said was inappropriate.
2. These people have a tendency to be repeat offenders. Meaning their behavior will not only be directed at you, usually they have done it to others as well, so don’t worry that people are going to judge you based on what this person says. Don’t feel like you need to go around defending yourself because you can’t be responsible for the actions and words of others. Also, if you do the right things then you have nothing to worry about anyways because people will know what kind of person or employee that you are and won’t listen.
3. Depending on how toxic this person’s behaviors are you are best to communicate with them in ways where there is tangible proof of those behaviors. Have a neutral person come in with you when you discuss with them the things they have said. Send an email to them so that their response is recorded. No matter what DO NOT be alone with this person when you try to talk to them, if they have twisted words once, they will surely try to find any opportunity to do it again.
It is most important that you don’t let these types of people and their behaviors get to you. Believe me I know that is easier said than done, but toxic people need very little consideration in your life. Feeding in to their negativity will only bleed in to your own life and cause unnecessary stress. So deal with them the best way you can, let it go, and then move on with your life the best way you can, in a positive direction.
Rebekah Hibbert is a Certified Athletic Trainer who works on getting athletes ready for their sport and taking care of them after they are hurt. She is passionate about women’s issues and sharing that passion through various social media outlets and is a part-time blogger trying to share my knowledge and experiences while connecting with others.
Connect with Rebekah… www.therealgirlgrind.blogspot.com
Around this time last year I was looking at job listings. The holidays were approaching and I really wanted to contribute to our income.
I also really wanted to get out of the house, to be honest. My time at home with the kids was starting to wear on me. I looked at everything: full-time, part-time, seasonal, anything during off-hours to avoid childcare costs.
I do well with self-governed busy work because I find comfort in repetition. It makes way for great thinking time, and quite honestly, peace and quiet.
I was rattling off several options to my husband one night at the dinner table. He is supportive of anything I want to do, but he knew I was selling myself short. That I wouldn’t be happy with a job “just to get me out of the house” for very long.
He looked at me pointedly and respectfully said: “Aim higher.”
At first I was a little put off by it. Didn’t he see that I was wanting to bring in a paycheck?
There is nothing in the world wrong with working an hourly hard-labor job. He and I both have long work histories doing just that. He put children’s bicycles together on an overnight shift one year for extra income, and I’m not above or afraid of a little elbow grease either.
I knew he wasn’t looking down on me. He is like a lot of go-getters that think of work in terms of maximizing skill sets to score something bigger and better for the soul. He found his passion in television, and knew I would do better long-term in a creative kind of job.
It never even occurred to me to aim higher. Why not take a passion and figure out how to make money that way? There has never been a better time in the world to do just that. But someone like me? Just starting out at 40? Isn’t that too hard?
I was originally just thinking short-term work with an end date for the holidays, and I wasn’t thinking of me. The deep down me.
My passion is writing. I had no idea how to get paid as a writer and I knew it would take some time to figure out how to get rolling with that.
But he planted the seed. Aim higher. What if? Yes it would be harder to brainstorm and come up with a plan and put myself out there as opposed to just punching a clock at a job I would end up hating. There was even a big possibility that I would fail. But what if?
I did go ahead and work a seasonal job doing busy work for the holidays while I figured it out (with his support.) And I used that quiet thinking time to think bigger. How would I try to make a living writing? Could I do it? Is it possible? What if I could write for that publication? Or that one?
I was giddy with the thought that I could get paid doing what I really wanted to do. And I gathered more information and studied up and started writing like crazy in the morning before the kids got up, and late at night after they were in bed. And I took a deep breath and began submitting pieces to publications online.
And slowly the cogs in the wheel started turning. I felt like I was inching a huge boulder up a hill bit by bit, but I was really excited to know that I could one day stand up there at the top and watch it roll down.
And I did just that. A whole lot of blood, sweat and tears started to pay off as I was published on several paid sites back to back. It was the best feeling in the whole wide world.
What could have been a mid-life-crisis in the making turned into a mid-life awakening.
I’m doing what I love and I find myself humming on days when I write and hit “publish.” And my whole family benefits from my newfound zest for life. My kids see me happy and excited for something.
And it’s all because he believed in me enough to plant that seed. He saw unused passion in me. And things could have turned out very differently if I had been offended at his advice. I needed to hear it, I knew I was settling back then.
“She thought she could, so she did” as the saying goes.
Encouraging a spouse in their potential is everything. Sometimes it’s a dream buried below the surface and it can be a sensitive subject, so proceed with caution. But please, by all means, proceed.
And my advice to you no matter where you’re at in life right now: Aim higher. And get those cogs turning.
Previous published on Huffington Post
Audra Rogers is a consistent burner of grilled cheese, and a freelance writer for hire specializing in Parenting, Personal Finance, DIY and New Adventures. She used to compete and compare until she saw what love could do. She also proudly featured a mechanical bull at her wedding reception.
Connect with Audra… RealHonestMom
I’m a declared self-improvement enthusiast. I’m sure we all know a few. Sometimes you’ll find them in the Self Improvement section of Barnes and Noble. Well that’s me! I love to be inspired and to read from those that seem to really get it. A few of my favorites include Wayne Dyer, Gabrielle Bernstein and Tony Robbins.
Since my college days, I’ve read countless books and have been on the path of searching, learning and growing. I had a knowing inside that there was something much larger happening.
When I recently hit 40 I looked back over the last decade and it felt stalled. This was a bit of shock and honestly incredibly hard and painful to admit. Because from the outside it all looked so fantastic and the life I longed for always was here and now. I was with a good stable career, a loving husband who’s also my best friend (yay!) and 2 daughters that I absolutely adore – wow this couldn’t be more perfect.
At some point after getting married, I had totally shifted and focused all my energy on everything but me that I felt well… like “me” was missing.
I was still reading my books and going to workshops, finally the real spark happened and sustainable growth came when I took the leap to work with a life coach. Wow did my life really shift. At first I was not ready for the hard work that would about to come. This was work, really hard work!! I had goals and actions every week all about what I wanted to achieve. And the accountability was exhausting!
Those early days it took time to get over the guilt of focusing on me and the inevitable self sabotaging that decided to come along for the ride. For a decade my entire life was about taking care of others. When the coaching didn’t seem so hard anymore, I looked up and noticed that this coaching thing was really working below the surface.
The benefit of working with a life coach is that they focus on next steps of getting you from A to B. Where are you now and where do you want to be?
Traditional therapy methods tend to look back and healing old traumas. There is a strong validity and a place for all the disciplines available to help people through difficult times. For me I got to a point where I wanted results and wanted to propel my life forward and fast. And boy was I in for a ride. I never would have imagined the lessons I was about to learn by partnering with a life coach.
I never expected that a life coach would teach me some of my most profound and universal spiritual lessons. But it did and here is some of the amazing stuff that came out of it.
When you tell the universe you are ready and willing to grow, it will throw all it has at you.
That’s what happened to me when I was ready to be open to the lesson, that is when they started. At first I didn’t realize the lessons I needed to learn until they kept getting stronger and stronger and I couldn’t ignore them anymore. When I saw them as the lessons that’s when I knew something incredible was happening and I was growing.
The universe wants you to heal.
This is where the lessons come in because they are always about a healing a wound that has yet to be healed. It all may seem like crazy chaos and painful and challenging but the reason it’s so loud and uncomfortable is because we have something really important to learn. So I took the time to slow down and listen to the lesson even when it felt so painful.
On the other side of fear is exactly what you want.
The parts of life that seem the scariest and the parts of ourselves that we think we can never change are the ones that are screaming inside to be changed. Taking a leap even when you don’t know where you are going to land is the first step to transformation. I was able to look at fear in a different way because the fear is a message.
You are much stronger than you can imagine.
Like building muscle with repetitions so does action of any kind in life. The more we do the easier it gets and along the way we keep getting stronger. The facing the fear and the listening to the hard lessons made me stronger because I knew they were there for my highest good.
Follow your inner voice and intuition.
We have an internal guiding system that is built from a perfect place. If we listen and follow that voice down that path it will take us to exactly where we need to be. I learned that my voice is the most important and as we listen to it more we can recognize it more quickly. This helps with making decisions that we know are supported by the universe.
So I continue to read my books and go to workshops. I have finished working with my life coach but the lessons will stay with me forever and I am forever grateful.
Kerri Benz has a passion to help modern entrepreneurs build successful businesses with a focus on digital marketing strategies. She loves to write about business, marketing, spirituality and all around life lessons to inspire and elevate the world around her. While she’s not doing all things marketing, she’s relaxing at home with her husband and two girls. She loves to read, watch movies, do hot yoga and travel.
Connect with Kerri… www.kerribenz.com, Instagram, Twitter
If you’ve been on the internet, watched the news or scrolled through social media within the last 24 hours, it is likely that you have come across a post Gigi Hadid made on her Instagram, directed at the internet bullies who have been body shaming her. After New York Fashion Week, Hadid was flooded with comments on her appearance, and telling her that she is not model material.
There is no shortage of body shaming in society today, whether you are in the spotlight like Hadid, or not. With the ability to hide behind a screen and username, it is has become increasingly easy for people who feel that they are entitled to voice their opinion on the body and lives of others, to do so.
Dealing with body shaming is something that almost everyone has experienced in their life time, and it breeds feelings of insecurity, inadequacy and unworthiness. Advertising and media alone have done a good job at making both women and men, feel uncomfortable in their own skin. In fact this insecurity is what is at the root of people going out of their way to tear others down, they are projecting their own feelings of insecurity onto others, and it has it’s consequences.
Here is her post:
When we see a super model being torn down and criticized for her appearance and size, it is no wonder that women are burdened with never feeling good enough. How is any women supposed to feel secure in her own skin, when even the women who are deemed the most beautiful by society’s made up standards are being body shamed? The answer is they can’t.
Although extremely unfortunate and inappropriate on the internet bullies part, there is a valuable lesson to take away from Hadid’s experience. And that is that no matter who you are, what you do, or how successful you are there it is never going to be good enough for everyone. Striving for a version of perfection that is unobtainable, will quickly lead to a life of unhappiness and insecurity.
Hadid fits society’s conventional beauty standards in every way with her long legs, abs and long bleach blonde, beach hair and she is still being told she isn’t good enough. In her Instagram post responding to the internet bullies, Hadid said that “I’m human, and I’m not going to lie, I did let the negativity get to me a little” confirming that even the most praised are not immune to feelings of unworthiness.
We are living in a time where insecurity and hate is being spread like wildfire, and only we have the power to reverse it. We can take a stand and start a revolution by loving and embracing ourselves exactly as we are. By being proud of who we are no matter our size, shape or race and not giving into the pressures of society, we can inspire and give permission to other women to do the same. The only way to put an end to internet bullying and body shaming is to rid society of the insecurity and scarcity mentality that is causing it in the first place. There is enough beauty and success to go around, and we don’t need to be hateful towards those who have it. Truth be told we all have it – beauty and success is something that only you can define for yourself, and the only standards you need to live up to are your own. Hadid said it best when she ended her instagram post saying “I hope everyone gets to a place in their life, where they’d rather talk about the things that inspire them, over the things that bring them down”.
A world where we can appreciate the success and beauty of others, is the kind of world should be aiming to create, and that starts each of us as individuals, by fully accepting and embracing ourselves.
Shanna Rochon is a Certified Culinary Nutrition Expert and Body Image Coach. She is on a mission to help women feel empowered, free and beautiful in their own skin, so that they can live the life they truly desire. Shanna currently coaches women privately, as well as runs interactive and transformative group workshops.
Connect with Shanna… www.shannarochon.com, Twitter,Facebook or Instagram.
Those that know me best know that I often struggle with myself. I have a constant itch to improve, which is both my greatest strength and my biggest weakness. Lately, I’ve struggled with my weight – despite never having been told that I’m at all unhealthy, the negative voice in my head tells me my stomach is too soft, my thighs too jiggly, my butt too big and still somehow not big enough. (My body image struggle is not always particularly rational.)
I wish I could point to one thing or another and say, “Yes! That’s the culprit.” But this, like most things, has been brought on by numerous circumstances: being close to people who fixate on the way bodies look instead of what they can do, limited time to devote to physical wellness, and living far away from many of the people who help me feel best about myself and my place in the world.
These factors all created a perfect storm that gave me the idea, the ammunition, and the time to tear myself down – no matter how many times I’m told that I’m beautiful, one-of-a-kind, completely irreplaceable, and more than good enough for the people I love. The negative voice in my head – the one we all battle – gains strength, shouting instead of whispering, blocking me from reaching the self-love and self-acceptance I so desperately crave.
But I’m having a moment of clarity. It’s very brief and is already fading away, but I’m trying to write it down in the hopes of lending this new voice credence, of encouraging it to speak up more often over the negative voice.
I know there are other women out there who are more conventionally beautiful. There are women out there with what others consider “better” proportions. There are definitely women who don’t have three chicken pox scars on their forehead or an asymmetrical jaw.
But deciding that my body is gross and terrible doesn’t erase that from existence. It doesn’t mean that the other women who the world has decided are “better” (read: supposedly more appealing to a straight male gaze) are going to suddenly stop being flawless. And they shouldn’t. They’re absolutely stunning, and so am I.
Instead, I should remind myself of the stuff that I have that is uniquely mine. I have beautiful hands that build more often than they destroy, that heal instead of hurt. I have an awesome tattoo that reminds me of the bond between mother and daughter. I have a way of putting other people at ease and making them laugh, even when I first meet them. I have a strength and grace that comes only from dealing with adversity and coming out on top. I have a smile that brightens a room and eyes that see the good in people. I have curls that are every bit as wild as my soul. I have a weak ankle from dancing too hard with my best friend, and I have an incredibly good heart.
These are the things that nobody can take from me, and these are the things I promise to remind myself of when I scroll through Instagram or Facebook, confronted by perfect bodies, flawless skin, and hair that seems to always be in place. These are the things I promise to think of when I spiral into feeling undesirable and unlovable; it’s my hope that you’ll do the same.
Marvel at the way your eyes crinkle when you smile, or how wildly you gesture when you’re excited about something. Those are the things that make you so mind-bendingly beautiful to the people who know you. It’s not so much about having your eyebrows perfectly arched or the longest eyelashes or the perfect red lipstick, and so much more about having goals in your mind and radical love in your heart.
While I technically don’t check all the boxes of conventional beauty standards, I still try to check all the boxes of my own standards – in both beauty and character. I am learning to eat better and drink more water every day. I try to go for long walks after work to make sure I sleep well at night. I’m making progress in a million tiny ways, some of which I probably don’t even notice. I’m working on my relationship with my body – and for all I know, so are the women I envied.
But I promise to myself that I’m going to make some progress every day. I’m going to change up who I’m following on social media from fitness models to people who don’t get paid to look great, to people who look more like the people I know in real life. I’m going to stop thinking of my tummy as too soft, of my butt as weird, and my thighs as too jiggly. They’re parts of me, and they are wonderful because I am wonderful. And so are you.
Miranda Huber is a recent graduate from Elmhurst College working to save money for even more school. In her free time, she enjoys reading books and talking to animals. Her interests include politics, pizza, and feminism.
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Be uniquely YOU. Learn to listen to that inner still voice inside of YOU. You can call this your intuition, your gut feeling. What does it desire to express to YOU? How does it want YOU to serve and share with the world? How many times do YOU take the time to listen to that inner still voice?
I highlighted the word YOU intentionally as it all starts with YOU.
Often many times we do not take notice of our inner still voice. We believe that the actions that we are taking are correct and we can do everything all on our own. We do not need help from anyone else; we go out there and create and take external actions.
When we do not get the desired result we wanted, we then start to dwell on our failure. We start to internally chat within ourselves. Our inner critic may sound something like this; “Why did you do that? You heard that inner voice within you that went against your logic, but you chose to ignore it and take the same action you always take.”
Does that sound familiar? Often our intuitional hunch does not make sense when we evaluate it and question it with our logical mind. My all time favorite quote is by the late Steve Jobs:
Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.
Start to listen more to that inner voice within YOU. It wants to be listened to. It is always reaching out to YOU. Trying desperately to communicate with YOU.
Are you allowing it to have its air time and play out? Take the fact that you found and read this article as a message, as a sign, that your inner voice is trying to speak to you. It is trying to get your attention. Will you now choose to listen?
Take the time to become quite and meditate, even if only for 10 minutes during you day. Even if all you do is stop and close your eyes in order to access how you feel from within yourself. it could make all the difference.
Like Christina Aguilera says in her song The Voice Within:
When there’s no one else, look inside yourself, like your oldest friend just trust the voice within. Then you’ll find the strength that will guide your way. If you learn to begin to trust the voice within
You will learn to discern between voices, thoughts and ideas from your parents, your friends and those in the external world. You will begin to hear the voice of your true intuition.
Take the time to intentionally listen to that inner voice within yourself. Do it daily and you will start to see… You will thank your intuition later when you start noticing new results.
Katrina Calvin is an up-and-coming motivational speaker and author as well as a personal development coach. She has worked in the educational field for over 8 years now. She discovered her passion of helping children and young people become the best versions of themselves and raising there consciousness from a young age. She believes that everyone can become the best versions of themselves. She is keen to turn her passion into a business after returning back to England after living in the Czech Republic for 8 months. Where she worked internationally teaching children and young people as well as parents English. She has also worked internationally previously in America during summer camp. Katrina works part time within various schools helping to support students to become the best versions of themselves. She is also in the process of setting up her own coaching business on and offline.
She believes that we must have goals in life otherwise we can be lead in a different direction from where we desire to go. She also believes in female empowerment all girls should be fierce and be go getters in life! Get to know and understand the way the mind works is the key! “The way that we talk to our children become their inner voice”~ Peggy O’Mara. You can change the way your inner voice talk to you for the better. No matter your circumstances everyone can achieve greatness.
Connect with Katrina… Twitter, , Facebook, www.katrinacalvin.com