As the popularity of social media and the availability of cell phones increases, it seems the word “bullying” has surfaced in the news on a daily basis. From stories of the recent conflicts in the Dolphins football team, to the young special needs student in Plano who was viciously cyber-bullied by a fellow classmate. Unfortunately we hear about many of these stories when a student takes drastic measures because they were unable to receive the help they needed. It’s not often that we turn on the news and hear about students standing up against this growing issue.
The Eagles football team have set an inspiring example for both youth and adults. They didn’t just stand up for a fellow player of their team, they created a purposeful and unique plan to make sure he felt accepted. In a group setting, and often in a competitive atmosphere, we tend to focus on our own achievements. We do anything we can to protect what we feel is important: our grades, our careers, and our relationships. We have always been told “do your best.” In a competitive team, that phrase easily translates to one thing: win.
The players of this middle school team set their pride aside to allow one student with a learning disability to experience personal success. They demonstrated what a real team should be. Not a collection of individuals chasing a minute in the spotlight, but a unified group who evolves and uses creative solutions to ensure every component feels valued. As one student in the news report tearfully explained: “I went from being someone who mostly cared about myself and my friends, to caring about everyone and trying to make everyone’s day.” Can you imagine how quickly we could decrease the amount of bullying if we showed this measure of kindness?
Because Group Dynamix is a team building company in Dallas, TX we have the privilege of seeing this kind of thing every day. People making incredibly difficult paradigm shifts from being self focused to others focused, and the dramatic impact it makes on their group’s success.
It could start with something as small as making eye contact and smiling at a stranger, or paying someone a genuine compliment. It may feel insignificant in your eyes, but it could give someone a positive feeling to pass on to others. Compassion is a domino effect. It only takes one adult or one child to make the first move. “Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” ~Mark Twain