Written and contributed by: Sherri Leopold
Sherri Strohecker Leopold is a Self-Empowerment Specialist currently living in Springfield, Illinois, and she has worked in the network marketing/direct selling industry for 20 years. Additionally, she has experience in speaking, mentoring, and team building in order to transform lives physically and financially, which she loves, as she shows you how to live the life you deserve. In addition, she is an Independent Brand Promoter for Le-Vel, a leader in the health and wellness industry. As a veteran in this industry, she remains passionate about encouraging others to live their best life, and to create financial freedom. She also coaches and mentors a large team all over the world. Furthermore, she was a contributing editor for the Healthy Lifestyles column in Exposure Magazine, and a contributing writer for B.R.A.G. Magazine. With her love for writing, Sherri recently co-authored her first book called, From Grief to Grind, in 2018. Not to mention, in June of 2019, she released her first solo book called, Self-Bullying: What To Do When the Bully is YOU! With that said, she loves to blog and write, and she frequently speaks for organizations and private groups on how to Dream Big with Sherri. Outside of business, Sherri is happily married to Scott Leopold and has been for over 31 years. Together, they have three grown children. She is also a fur mom to five felines and has spent many years helping the feline rescue, Forever Home Feline Ranch. Lastly, not only does Sherri enjoy writing, she enjoys reading, painting and drawing in her free time.
Have you ever asked yourself, “How did I get here?” And was it followed by, “I am so dumb for getting myself into this predicament.” I didn’t follow my own gut instinct and this was exactly where I landed – in a self-bullying morass.
That’s where I was, over 4 years ago, when I found myself building a very successful business; yet, was in the middle of a physical crisis known as broken heart syndrome. That crisis was brought on by enormous stress. I was in the midst of a character assassination by the people I had served in the small town where I previously lived.
Have you ever been in such a tight space that you needed to make a decision, and none of your choices seemed good? I made a choice to leave the life I had built for 20 years, and to leave the house I loved and where our children grew up, to be able to find peace. Guess what? I found MYSELF!
Sometimes, in the most unlikely circumstances and in the darkest times, we find our purpose. From my deepest grief of losing who I thought I was in this world, I was reborn into a better version of myself. During my healing, I wrote about my story in the anthology, From Grief to Grind. It took 18 months of healing to realize what I had experienced was grief. Ironically, my personal Le-Vel business skyrocketed and grew like crazy. It ignited in me a sincere desire to be an agent of change.
In June 2018, my true purpose and passion was revealed. Perhaps, it was there all along; but during my healing journey, I was quiet enough to hear what I was called to do. The Stop Self-Bullying movement was birthed, as I started my own company, called Dream BIG with Sherri. In all my years in direct selling/network marketing, one of the most common phrases I would hear was, “I’m just not good at sales or I am not as outgoing as you, etc.” Hearing that, I realized this stemmed from what they told themselves, not necessarily from true facts.
In fact, Self-Bullying often has very little basis. As a matter of fact, it’s simply what we allow our inner voice to circulate through our mind. One important fact to realize is that the inner voice IS your voice! Typically, it sounds like this:
- I suck!
- You wouldn’t catch me dead in a swimsuit.
- Yeah, I am trying to lose my baby weight, oh but my baby is 30.
- I am so broke, no one would want to date me.
- I am always going to be broke or stuck in this crappy job.
- What’s wrong with me?
- I’m so stupid, why do I keep picking these horrible guys who treat me terrible.
You get the general idea.
A few things you can do to combat this self-bullying behavior is:
- Realize this kind of talk is not unusual, but you need to own it. With that, I mean, it is not always the comments that are coming out of our mouths, but sometimes, just what we say to ourselves. This self-talk is generated by Ivy. Who’s Ivy? Ivy is an inner voice – better known as IV. I call her Ivy, but that’s only because like the plant, Ivy is invasive, and grows like mad without any provocation or help. Another thing to remember, it’s hard to get rid of it or to keep it from taking over. In comparison, your inner voice can easily spread like Ivy and take over your inner thoughts. In fact, sometimes those thoughts spread so fast you cannot control them. Keep in mind, Ivy or IV, can also stand for intravenous. That literally means directly into the vein. I believe, we always have an IV pole alongside us. On that pole, we are all carrying a bag. What goes in that bag is up to us! It can be life sustaining nutrients or liquid or your bag can be mixed with a little poison or trouble. The thing to remember is while we control this bag, it can be tampered with by our outside relationships. If you are not watching and guarding your bag, you may find someone has injected your IV with something that doesn’t serve you.
- Understand, YOU always have control of your IV because it IS YOUR VOICE! It is important to turn your thoughts into positive actions.
- Protect your IV bag. You do this by keeping the pole close, and using your discernment skills to screen out friends, coworkers, family, etc, so they won’t tamper with or impose on your bag (thoughts and voice).
- Your standard answer if someone isn’t putting “power fluid” in your IV should be “No thank you, I don’t receive that.” I promise, if you use this statement you will not receive the same behavior. This is YOU standing up for you by protecting your IV bag, and preventing the Ivy from spreading like a wildfire.
- Create a tribe of people who do not self-bully and who won’t allow you to, and who will commit to be in partnerships on both accounts.
In addition, there are very specific steps and techniques you can take; along with others like SNAP, which will help you to recognize and stop self-bullying in yourself and others. These techniques will help keep your IV bag clean. You can read more about these techniques in my book: Self Bullying: What To Do When the Bully is YOU! If you send me an email at DreamBIGwithSherri@gmail.com with “SNAP” in the message title and share with me one of the self-bullying statements you most need to stop, I will send you a video of this powerful technique.
Another technique I teach to combat this thought process is A.C.E, which are practical strategies for limiting this type of thinking. This acronym stands for Acknowledge, Change and Evolve. You must first acknowledge you can do it; in doing so, you will bring about the ability to change the behavior, and as you change this behavior, you will begin to evolve into the very best version of yourself. As you know, an ace is the most powerful card in the deck, and just like the ace, we want to show up powerfully in our own lives.
Thinking back, as I was supporting a friend in early June 2018 through an emotional time, I saw she was torturing herself with whatever she was telling herself. I chronicled the story in my first self-authored book, which I just released, Self-Bullying: What To Do When the Bully is YOU! I could see she was saying hateful things to herself, and yet, she hadn’t uttered a word out loud. When I called her on it, she was in complete shock. I asked her if she thought she needed to say it out loud for me to hear it. My answer to that was… No. The truth is we wear our mess in our heads like clothes. It’s something we literally put on and wear around.
With that said, I am so blessed to be able to teach people of all ages to love themselves exactly as they are, and to stand in the power of “ME” to live their biggest dreams! One of the messages I teach is to get rid of the mess that doesn’t serve you! I love doing this through my personal and group coaching. I also teach people how they can feel and live powerfully every day, and in every way. We often hear people say, “Hurt people… hurt people.” However, you will hear me say, “Broken people try to break people.” In fact, misery loves company; and if broken people can make you feel more miserable than they feel, then in their minds, that makes them feel more powerful. I am here to say that no one can take me down. Be assured, if I fall, I will rise again and higher than before. As I rise, I will also extend my hand to you, as I encourage and lead you.
Know, within the deepest part of your soul, there are no shadows without light. While you may encounter many shadows on your journey, remember, YOU are the light! There is no one like YOU. You are a unique, one of a kind human being, much like a snowflake. Understand, you are designed for greatness and when you can stand up straight, fully in the POWER of “ME,” your light will shine. In realizing that, you will be extraordinary, without exception.
Always remember, YOU are an unrepeatable M-I-R-A-C-L-E!!
If you want to know how to recognize and stop bullying yourself, pick up my book. It is full of helpful ways to change your thinking and love yourself more.
Link for my book: https://www.sherrileopold.com/stop-self-bullying.html
Email address: DreamBIGwithSherri@gmail.com
Book for speaking engagements: 636-692-4415
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