Anti-bullying Strategy: Ask this question to separate.

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bullying, incivility, horizontal violence, vertical violence, oppression

I was talking to my colleague, David, whom I used to work with. He was an LPN at the time and had aspirations of getting his RN degree. The issue is that he has dyslexia and knew it would be extremely difficult. I encouraged him to “go for it” and I’m glad to say that he did. I’m so proud to say that he is now an RN.
However, because of his dyslexia, he had difficulty getting a job and when he finally did, he struggled.
We met a few weeks ago and he shared some of his experiences as a new, older, male nurse with dyslexia. The stories he shared about how horrifically he was treated were shocking to me. Although I spend the majority of my time helping individuals and organizations address and eliminate bad behavior in healthcare, I still can’t fathom how people can be so cruel to others.
And then David said something that made me speechless (and that’s hard to do).

When I said, “They weren’t very nice to you, were they?” David replied, “Well they aren’t very nice people to begin with.”
So simple yet so powerful. You see, like you, I just assume people are innately nice. So when they behave in ways that are cruel, I’m shocked. But when you think about it, some people just aren’t nice to begin with. For whatever reason (and I don’t justify why), they just aren’t nice.
What’s the point?
The point is, that we internalize and absorb the negative comments and behaviors made by other people…when sometimes those other people just aren’t nice and therefore, unworthy of affecting us. By understanding this, it allows us to separate and NOT allow such people to make us feel bad about ourselves.
The next time someone lashes out, embarrasses or treats you poorly, stop and think, is this person a nice person to begin with? If not, refuse to allow this person to affect you in a negative way. Or as Taylor Swift sings, “Shake it off!”

Remember, nurses should be kind – not cruel!
Thanks so much for reading. Take care and stay connected!
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