A Simple Way to Disarm any Verbal Bully

It Really is Like Taking Candy Away from a Baby

Mark Goulston

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And the candy they love and use to get the better of you and others is baiting you because you almost always take the bait.

If you’re like most people who value civility and mutual respect, sorry to inform you, but you have a Shadow in your personality of dark, destructive and vitriolic thoughts, feelings and impulses that you will do anything to keep out of your awareness and consciousness.

A Shadow is a term coined by psychologist Carl Jung to designate some parts of your personality that you often want to deny exist, because they are so repugnant to you (plus many other parts that may not be repugnant, but that you’d just rather not be aware they exist).

That is because they are so unacceptable to you and your view of yourself, just the notion that you possess them threatens to riddle your conscience with deep and even disabling shame.

Not to worry, having a Shadow is synonymous with having a conscience.

All verbal bullies, especially the ones who are always bragging about themselves and berating, belittling, humiliating and ridiculing others, consciously and even unconsciously know that if they can so outrage you, that they enrage you, it threatens to awaken that dark Shadow and have it wreak havoc through your psyche and mind.

You may ask, does the verbal bully have a Shadow. When you’re dealing with someone with narcissistic and sociopathic tendencies, the answer is no. The reason for that, is that such people generally lack a conscience, compassion or empathy, and what is the Shadow of the civil, decent person is overt and in your face from the verbal bully.

I won’t go into events and interactions we are currently seeing in the political arena, but you can easily fill in the characters who brag about themselves while berating and belittling others.

When you watch that happen and you see a smile on the one being bullied, that smile is an awkward attempt to cause observers to not notice that the mild-mannered, civil, decent person is barely suppressing the impulse to eviscerate the verbal bully.

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Mark Goulston

Dr. Goulston is the world's #1 listening coach and author of "Just Listen" which became the top book on listening in the world