The Gentle Mind

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Hypnosis for dealing with bastard and bullying bosses

On the whole, most of us do what we can to fit in at work.

After all, we all need to make a living.

But the workplace can tolerate all sorts of behaviours. Liars, cheats, laziness - and bullying.

And this is what I want to talk about.

Before I go any further there are workplace procedures in place to protect you: even acts of law.

Basically, bullying can be defined as intimidation, insults, or humiliation.

Bullying can be related to age, disability, nationality, race, religion, gender, sex, sexual orientation, or any personal characteristic of an individual.

But when you’re in the thick of it or come out the other side it can leave its scars and dent confidence.

Being bullied - how we see ourselves

What happens is, we, as the people experiencing bullying, start to internalise it.

Become self-critical. We want to understand the reasons why we are being targeted and invariably we start to blame ourselves.

As a result, we try to change or mask that unique characteristic in order to avoid the bullying.

It starts to affect our behaviour and the ways in which we see ourselves, which in turn, can go on to impact both our mental and physical health.

The way we see bullying is all wrong. It isn’t because we are different in some way: it’s because the bullies are. Let’s turn this on its head.

So, why do people bully?

The most common reason people bully is that they are going through something themselves.

It could be:

  • They’ve been bullied and think of it as acceptable learnt behaviour.
  • They see you as ‘emotionally weak’.
  • They have low self-esteem order to mask how they actually feel about themselves they focus attention on someone else - you.
  • They are also much more likely to come from violent households with lots of arguments and hostility.
  • Poor education; their hate-based conversation directed at others may be the norm, they may not understand that they’re being derogatory.
  • And, specific to the workplace, they may not be up to the job themselves and need to hide this.

At the core what bullies are doing is focusing on something that is unique about you – either preying on or creating new insecurity with an intent to hurt.

Enough about the bullies - What about you?

You don’t have to take it. In fact you don’t have to let it bother you. It’s one of the underlying principles of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT):

You can’t control how other people think, feel, or act, but you can control your response. This can be no response at all. It’s your true superpower.

The role of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and hypnosis

What we are talking about here is meaning.

Or lack of it.

Nothing has to have any meaning if you decide so.

So, for example, bullies love creating a sense of upset. If they can see they’re not getting through they’re a busted flush.

The calmer you get, the less that gets to you, the less effect they have on you.

We can role model this under hypnosis and subdue any sort of meaning, or toxic influence, these people think they have.

And there’s assertiveness training we can do together.

Assertiveness isn’t ‘getting arsey’. It’s quite simply standing up for your rights in such a way that that the rights of others aren’t violated.

What I’m getting you to do is to learn how:

  • to express your personal likes spontaneously
  • talk about yourself without being self-conscious
  • disagree with someone openly
  • ask for clarification
  • say no
  • use your body language as support

In short, when you are an assertive person, you can be more relaxed in the moment that bullies like to control.

In effect, assertiveness training reduces your stress by teaching you to stand up for your legitimate rights and reduce conflict.

You can pushback tactfully (as an aside I love Winston Churchill’s definition, “Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip.”)

Remember it all starts with your legitimate rights - Remember them.

1. You have a right to sometimes put yourself first
2. You have a right to make mistakes
3. You have a right to be the final judge of your feelings and accept them as legitimate
4. You have a right to have your own opinions and convictions
5. You have a right to change your mind or decide on a different course of action
6. You have a right to protest unfair treatment of criticism
7. You have a right to interrupt in order to ask for clarification
8. You have a right to negotiate for change
9. You have a right to ask for help
10. You have a right to feel and express pain
11. You have a right to ignore the advice of others
12. You have a right to receive formal recognition for your work and achievements
13. You have a right to say no
14. You have a right to be alone, even if others want to control your time
15. You have a right not to have to justify yourself to others
16. You have a right not to take responsibility for someone else’s problem
17. You have a right not to have to anticipate the needs and wishes of others
18. You have a right not to worry about the goodwill of others - it’s work not a popularity contest
19. You have a right to choose not to respond to a situation

So, who am I?

I’m James Thomas a Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapist. Bullying and workplace stress are just two of the areas I work in, others include, drug addiction, smoking, alcohol abuse, PTSD, overeating, low self-esteem, eczema, and anger, to name but a few.

Before I became a Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapist I worked in the corporate world and saw plenty of outstanding acts of kindness - and worked with some real shits.

And these shits were accepted with a shrug of the shoulders and the words, “Hey, it’s just business.” No, it’s not. It's people’s lives.

I cover all of Lincolnshire with my rooms in Louth and Lincoln.

You can get in touch with me at or call 07787563099.

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