The bully may have manipulated themself into a position of power where they can bluff and bluster by appearing busy doing important tasks which they tackle with a frenzy of busy work, meanwhile letting everyone around know how busy they are, how vital to the smooth running of the department.
When tackled about bullying behaviour, the bully will profess innocence, insist there has been a misunderstanding, and they are in no way bullying. But they will go on with the same behaviour; they have no desire to change. The trusting target/s forgive again and again, underestimating the seriousness of the problem they face.
Equally, don't underestimate the power of a friendly word to a friend, colleague or family member who is being bullied. A simple "good on you", a supportive email or text message, a friendly comment can strengthen the target's confidence. Your assistance can make the difference between the target feeling completely alone and knowing that others are in the background; reliable and solidly dependable. I've found it best not to assume that those close to the target will be there when needed (for all sorts of reasons). Kind words are usually very welcome.
|"Thoughts are like traces of birds in Heaven" as are kind, supportive words.|
East Side Gallery. Berlin. 2009.
The serial bully will manipulate situations shrewdly and deviously to gain any advantage, their goal is to underminine the target and possibly avoid being seen for being out of their depth. Their self serving goals are obtained at the expense of others and they may have no scruples about tampering with data or systems to make the target appear incompetent. One person I worked with found that whenever data needed to be entered on the computer system, it inexplicably 'crashed', but whenever those on the inner group needed access, all was well.
Bullies are masters at manipulation and deception and are operating from a different set of values and moral code than normal, mature adults. It isn't possible to use the same sort of rational discussion or assume they will behave in ways that are calm, considered, rational and reasonable. Bullies manipulate shamelessly, they are devious, cunning, unreliable and simply not to be trusted no matter how many times they promise to change.
There are many outstanding resources on line. A couple I find useful are Bullying. No way! an Australian resource for teachers and students, and a UK site Bully On Line. This is in no way an exhaustive list, and each country will no doubt have equally good or more relevant websites. If you're being bullied please seek advice from a professional health care practitioner experienced in this area.
Over at jumpingaground I'm spending the month Drabbling using alliteration, many with an environmental theme.