Feel like you have a bright, shiny target tattooed on your forehead? Chances are, a bully singled you out for a reason. Here are eight profiles of common bully targets. Even if you can’t dodge the attack, you’ll understand better why you’re the one dodging missiles.
• You were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. Bullies are opportunistic; take heart knowing you weren’t her first victim and you won’t be the last.
• You’re a person of integrity. Bullies despise people with this trait because they desperately wish they had some.
• You’re good at your job. Bullies seek to tear others down to hide their own inadequacies.
• You’re well-liked among colleagues and clients. Bullies’ tirades are often fueled by jealousy of healthy relationships and envy of intellect and talent.
• You receive more attention than the bully. Many bullies possess the emotional maturity of a 3-year-old child and require constant attention and flattery.
• You reveal vulnerability that she can exploit. Bullies can smell weakness from a mile away and will capitalize on any sore spots you expose.
• You refuse to bow to the bully or join her clique. Eschewing conformity—or simply having a mind of your own—might be enough to put you in a bully’s crosshairs.
• You aim to change (gasp!) the status quo. Bullies are often threatened by change, unless, of course, they are the ones leading the revolution.