Friday, April 19, 2013

How women see themselves vs. How others See Them #OPINION

How women see themselves vs. How others see them
A colleague from the University of Texas at Dallas, John McCaa, who also works for  Channel 8 News, sent out this amazing video post-titled “Forensic artist draws how women see themselves vs. how others see them’(1). The video link is listed below. Please check it out it! It is just amazing!!      



So I asked the question-How Other’s See Me?:
My Sister-in-Law: Very strong willed woman, dedicated mother, hard worker, little self-involved, does not reach out enough to brothers in Dallas.
My Daughter-in-Law: You’re a really caring, loving and compassionate person about life, acts a lot older than you are and needs to be more social.
Girlfriend #1: Envious of how tall you are and in awe on how very well educated you became. I see you as a person that I always have been able to get along with. Very level headed.
Girlfriend #2: Fun, loving, caring person with much determination to be successful at everything you do. You also show compassion towards others and you worries too much about weight and appearance.

Well in conclusion:  The people I interviewed see me as a mother, a hard working woman with determination and focused on being successful with most everything I touch, someone that is caring and compassionate about others and life in general. Tall, well-educated and very level headed with strong interpersonal skills. That I am someone who obsess of weight, age and appearance to the point where the perceptions is that I act older then my age and need to socialize more. That I am a tad bit self-involve and do not reach out to family and friends as much as I should.

How I See Myself:
Thick lips, large sultry eyes, very voluptuous and sensual, in walk, appearance, choice of clothing…ect..Small noise, large ears, thinning hair, good chin, neck has a little too much loose skin. I think I am thick but curvy. I am stubborn, analytical; I am dedicated to all the things I have developed a passion for. I see myself as a humanitarian that maintains a limited interaction (at times) with some people in particular and purposefully. I love all music, poetry, exercise, fun, good food and quiet moments. So, yes the answer is that we, as women see ourselves totally different (negative and positive connotations) from how we are perceived by other women.


 Peace Diana

(c) Copywrite by Diana Mary Sharpton
References:
1. Video: How women see themselves vs. How others See Them. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zw72ECvuT5c

What Makes a Workplace Bully? #OPINION

Spotting a Workplace Bully (1)
This Post is based on personal experience, observation and opinion. Therefore, the only thing that qualifies me to able speak about bullying is because I have been at the receiver end of this behavior at one level or another sense childhood. The most brutal was in the workplace. There are literally thousands of stories and books/articles written by men and women that have studied extensively on this subject matter but I have lived it and survived.

I am first going to try to define what bullying is to me with a little support from the professionals. Second, I will discuss the three types of bullying that affected my life and last but not least, I am going to attempt to give you a victim’s perspective on whether or not bullying behavior can be changed.

1.) Definition – Bully (2):
“Bullying has been defined as (an aggressive, intentional act or behavior that is carried out by a group or an individual repeatedly and over time against a victim who cannot easily defend him or herself) (Olweus, 1993). This definition stresses the intentionality by the author of the aggressions, in order to provoke physical or psychological harm in victims. Moreover, the difference between ordinary disputes among children and acts of bullying consists also of the repetition over time and of the imbalance of power between the bully and the victim, with the affirmation of the supremacy of the bully on the victim (in terms of age, physical strength, etc..) (Cullingford and Morrison, 1995)..Sharp and Smith (1994) highlight the following forms of bullying according to the type and intensity of the aggressive behavior:
physical bullying (thumps, pushing, being physically overbearing),
verbal bullying (injuries, blackmail, intimidation, oppression, insults, calling people,
indirect bullying (social manipulation consisting in using others as a means rather than attacking the victim directly; for example: annoying and offensive gossip, systematic exclusion of a person from the life of a group, etc.).
physical bullying and verbal bullying can be considered as forms of direct bullying, since they imply a face-to-face relationship between bullies and victims.”

2.) Definition – Workplace Bullying (3):
Who gets bullied? You can be anywhere on the corporate ladder; a woman or a man; blue collar or white collar—workplace bullying can happen to anyone.
What does workplace bullying look like? Workplace bullying might include getting ignored, put down, left out, talked about, or humiliated and although workplace bullying tends to be subtle, when men bully, it is often more aggressive or physical. With women, it might be more backhanded.
Signs of workplace bullying: The following signs of workplace bullying are adapted from research from the State University of New York and Wayne State University. While some of these behaviors may be isolated, if they form a pattern over time and are extreme, they may indicate workplace bullying:
Being left out from work-related social events
Coworkers storming out of the work area when you enter
Others regularly arriving late for meetings that you call
Being given the “silent treatment”
Not being given the praise you thought you deserved
Being treated rudely or disrespectfully
Coworkers refusing to help when you ask
Spreading rumors about you that aren’t true and that nobody denies
Being given little or no feedback about your performance
Others responding slowly to requests that were important to you
Being yelled or shouted at
Receiving put-downs about your intelligence or competence
Your telephone calls or other communications are ignored
Your contributions are ignored
Someone interferes with or sabotages your work
Being the recipient of mean pranks
Being lied to
Being denied a raise or promotion without a valid reason
Being given bigger workloads or shorter deadlines than coworkers
Being accused of making a mistake on purpose
A coworker throws a temper tantrum when you disagree with him
Being put down in front of others

The story begins: I was the first daughter after three boys and loved my daddy. Looking back, I think my existence in the household created an imbalance with the boys at least from my prospective and of course there is another side to this story (theirs). There were subtle hints of bullying behavior, like one of my brothers giving my sister and I, fist knocks/thumps on the head (coscorones in Spanish) when things were not going his way. They were annoying and based on the above definition this was “physical” bullying. It was a bothersome behavior and I remember it to this day; however, I don’t think it marred my personality at the time. It did make me feel out of sorts and different.

My parents sent me to America when I was twelve years old to live with my grandparents and attend a Middle High School located in North Dallas. This was all an effort to remove me from my first “Love” experience and or situation. My parents, I guess, were mortified about my entrance into puberty. Remember, I was homeschooled, in Mexico, up until this point and just the removal from my home was traumatizing enough but then I was enrolled into Middle High School, in America.

This is where I was introduced to some serious “verbal” bullies and they came in all shapes, sizes, race and gender. They called me a “Mexican Greaser” and tormented me, daily, because I was socially awkward. I just hated going to that school. My grandmother forced me cut my long hair, as a solution, so that I could just blend in. This action just broke my heart. I loved my hair and was proud of where I came from. This period in my life weighed heavily on my heart. This was when I started to doubt and question myself.

Looking back, my first question, today, is why do children or better said teenagers learn to behave in this manner? I honestly believe that bullying is a learned trait replicated by their environment and this environment includes the parents. Yes, parents are responsible for instilling the proper social behavior, etiquette, and moral values in their children. As a community, we are responsible for letting parents know when this behavior is observed. As a community, we are also responsible for teach our children how to be good parents. Now this is not to be confused with those children that stand-up to their aggressors. Long story short, my parents, listened to my painful incantations and moved me to a private girl’s school where the culture was 100% more congenial. This is where I flourished. I became my class’s parliamentarian and played on the basketball team.

The last place was at my job and this was the most challenging because everyone needs a job to survive and pay the bills. It is definetly not as easy to find a new one. Don’t get me wrong, for the first twenty years in the work place, I thrived and moved up the latter. Then I got a government job and this is where I experienced “indirect and verbal” bullying. I was confronted by someone that for one reason or another believed that supervising required controlling every move; playing fear tactics, lying, setting you-up, isolating you, manipulation through via group “think” (i.e. The practice of thinking or making decisions as a group in a way that discourages creativity or individual responsibility) and so many other negative mannerisms in an effort to deem, micromanage and control. They were very good at covering up the truth and developing a purpose (i.e. mission) for their behavior. I was XXXX and XXX!

Yes, first my hair started to fall out because of the stress and then I got very sick. I went to the hospital, had emergency surgery. Looked for other jobs, however this person was in my life for a reason and their behavior was going to STOP, at least with me. No one has the right to place a hold on your life like this and I began to stand up for myself. I do want to add that bullies in charge and or supervisors do not change their mannerisms because they feel justified and have convinced management this is the case. Their bad behavior hovers on the surface, just waiting for that justified attack on their victim!

It is a journey to understand why someone justifies bad behavior but also remember you must look inward, adjust yourself in order to TRY to change the situation. Remember the only thing I could control was how I behaved. To this day, I believe my failure was not having confidence in myself and trusting my instincts. I have changed this reality. Finally, believe and support your loved ones going through this type of situation. It’s a struggle to gain back your self-esteem, power and control.

PEACE OUT, DIANA!
(c) copywrite by Diana Mary Sharpton

References:
2.     Definition: Bullying. Bullying & Cyber. Bullyingandcyber.net. http://www.bullyingandcyber.net/en/definitions/

3.     Definition: Workplace Bullying. The Emotional Life. pbs.org. http://www.pbs.org/thisemotionallife/topic/bullying/adult-bullying

His “Pick-Up” Line #OPINION

Body Language by Paulu (1)
After a long extensive workout, I decided to indulge in a cranberry refreshment at a local RAZZOO’s, yes in my workout attire, on a Thursday, I still looked good! I was approached by a gentleman in his early 50’s from middle-eastern lineage. He introduced himself only as “Jimmy” and he just wanted to talk. He offered to buy my drink. I was receptive to this request and he proceeded to tell me he was an initially from Pakistani and very married. I didn’t say anything and continued to listen. The surprising point to this comment was his “pick-up” line. He wanted to point out and for me to recognize that, American woman, are very unhappy creatures. Was I one? Why…the reasons being that they have emasculated the American man with the assistance of the American Government. Keeping my composure, I continued to try to understand where this was all going, at last, he makes the argument that it was the nature of man to seek out and engage in masculine activities (if you catch my drift) regardless of their marital status and that women would be happier if they understood this concept and embraced it….Wow! 

I have never been handed a line crap like this. He continued to develop his philosophy by making claim that families would remain intact, children would be raised by the initial parents and America would be a better place…My curiosity “made me do it” and I asked why in his culture women were required to cover up in Burkas and he said this was their choice…Well apparently, all cultures have their excuse as to the acceptability of cheating behavior…As a distant observant, and only based on personal opinion developed herein, it looks like some governments do engage in the policing of “Morality”….All I can say is HMMMMM….

Peace on a Thrusday...

(c) Copywrite by Diana Mary Sharpton

References:
1. Photograph: Body Language by Paulu. http://www.toonpool.com/cartoons/Body%20Language_8624

Uncut: The Deanna Cook 911 tapes and getting your attention-WFAA #OPINION

Deanna Cook (1)
Deanna Cook's was brutally murdered by her ex-husband after failed attempts to get help through 911(2). 

She was a beautiful young woman, from all appearances, and had every right to live a long happy life, as we all do. We as a community need to understand what can be done to prevent this type of violence. In my opinion, yes we need to “LISTEN and ACT” to all calls for HELP, however, it would seem, that the root speaks to how children are raised and the responsibility that we as a community have in ensuring that they not only have healthy, happy, positive environments but receive nurture.

Unfortunately, most of the time, getting or being involved at this level can be perceived as an invasion of privacy. So what can you do to correct, teach or just communicate to young mothers and fathers on the most important features to raising healthy, happy rational personalities? How do we treat children with personality, social and/or mental deficits without stigmatizing, isolating and/or labeling? And finally, to ask for help? It is all very sad to me.

We are all so busy and have little time to get to know our elderly parents or even neighbors much less try to help and understand a stranger or a young family that is imploding. Would it be the right time to consider others and even our communities as important as self? It is for me...

Peace Diana
(c) Copywrite by Diana Mary Sharpton

References:
1. Photography: Deanna Cook. http://www.myfoxtwincities.com/story/19345661/police-chief-admits-911-failed-dallas-woman
2. http://www.myfoxtwincities.com/story/19345661/police-chief-admits-911-failed-dallas-woman