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Silent Bullying: Going from “Me First” to “We First”

Have you ever been annoyed by someone's carelessness at work or in public? It turns out these little actions can be "silent bullying." See if you're guilty and how to change it!

The subtle, dismissive acts we often overlook? They're more harmful than we think and can amount to 'silent bullying.'

Overt aggression? Biting words? Sure, they hurt. But often, it's the silent gesture that says, "I'm more important than you."

Think of the abandoned coffee cup or the car taking up two parking spots. The friend who fails to honor a promise, or that neighbor playing deafening midnight melodies.

We've all been there, me included. But it's our next move that truly counts.

In the corporate world, these behaviors intensify:

  • Colleagues who take over communal spaces.

  • Team leads dominating discussions.

  • One person hoarding shared resources.

  • Those disruptive weekends and after-hour emails.

  • Teammates left deciphering undetailed work.

  • Hasty booking of meeting rooms without prior checks.

  • Tools not returned to their rightful places.

  • Safety protocols brushed aside.

  • Decisions made without team consultation.

These actions, while seeming benign, echo loudly: "I'm above the rest."

Whether it's a result of unawareness, work stress, or a skewed sense of priority, the underlying message is consistent: "I'm the priority here."

It isn’t always about malice. But the message remains constant: "My time, my tasks, my world – it's bigger than yours."

This mindset doesn't just disrupt camaraderie—it eats away at teamwork, respect, and collective growth.

So, how do we pivot from this stance?

  • Curiosity through Self-Reflection: Each day, reflect. Were you the best version of yourself?

  • Feedback from Peers: Occasionally seek feedback. "How can I be a better team member?"

  • Mindfulness Moments: A brief daily meditation can ground you, making you more present.

  • Cultivate Empathy: Regularly, place yourself in a colleague's position. Understand their perspective.

  • Personal Boundaries: Openly communicate during overwhelming times to prevent inadvertent outbursts.

  • Acknowledge and Apologize: Daily appreciation or a sincere apology can mend bridges.

It's a journey of continuous growth, not about achieving perfection.

By embracing empathy and self-awareness, we not only uplift ourselves but also fortify the essence of our workplace culture.

Before you go, I'm curious: Have you noticed other forms of silent bullying at work? __________________________


You're an Alpha Leader - brilliant, driven, formidable. But what about the emotional landscape of leadership? It can sometimes strain relationships and team dynamics.

Here is where I come in.

Together, we'll shape you into an Empathic Alpha Leader, where strength meets understanding, and decisiveness pairs with empathy.

Start your journey to empathic leadership today.



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