No Limits

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Coach Mike's Blog

Miami Dolphins: A No Limits Take on Team Bullying

November 14, 2013

Last week, Miami Dolphins Offensive Tackle Jonathan Martin left the team alleging that he was the victim of continuous abuse and bullying by teammate Richie Incognito. According to Martin and his attorney, Incognito would frequently harass Martin verbally and physically along with trying to “toughen him up” for life in the NFL.


While Martin states he was the victim, Incognito and many current and former teammates claim that Incognito befriended Martin and the voicemails and text messages were nothing more than jokes and motivating tactics to get Martin to the next level.  It was even rumored that Miami Dolphins coaches and management told Incognito to push Martin hard which is reminiscent of a ‘Code Red’ made famous in the movie A Few Good Men.


Who knows what the truth is here and let it be known that I, and the No Limits programs, do not condone bullying of any kind.


Of course the media jumped all over this story and immediately went into “victim and villain mode,” normally their favorite types of stories.  This was followed up by continual stories containing any morsel of information they can uncover along with interviews with anyone and everyone who ever knew Martin and Incognito.  Then it’s on to the subject of bullying in football, in sports, in society, and in schools.


And, what is the massive media exposure on this subject going to create?  More bullying.


Here is how…


This is an energy Universe and every single thing in this Universe is comprised of the same energy, including you and me.  And, we ALL create our experiences through the focus of our consistent thoughts, our consistent actions and most importantly, our consistent state of being.  So, when I look at this situation, I know that Martin’s thoughts and state of being had to be one of victim mentality, or feeling sorry for himself, or some other form of resistance that could attract experiences like these.  When I look at Incognito, I know that his thoughts and state of being had to be some sort of fear… fear that Martin was going to fail, fear that Martin didn’t respect him, or his teammates or fear that Martin didn’t acknowledge and respect Incognito as the leader of the team’s offensive line.  And, when two people are in the states as described above, you have the perfect storm for this exact situation to happen.


They both created the situation.


What I would have advised Martin (among many other things) is to shift his internal focus and state of being off of being the target of teammates ridicule and put all of his focus and energy on what he wanted to experience playing in the NFL.  I would have advised Incognito to take his attention off ‘changing’ Martin and place his attention on being a team leader and example to help build one of the top lines in football.  I would also explain to Incognito that the things that piss him off or frustrate him about Martin are actually internal issues that he has with himself, not Martin.


This has little or nothing to do with bullying and the more focus and national attention we place on bullying, the more we will fan the flames for bullying.


Instead, what is the opposite of bullying?


It is kindness. It is treating people with respect. It is doing good deeds without expectation of something in return.  It is compassion, friendship, empathy, understanding and support.  It is acceptance.


We need to continue teaching people, especially young people, that our focus needs to be on these actions and being that person who treats people with respect and kindness.  We need to teach people that if they are the bully, it is them with the unresolved issues and teach them how to change it.  We need to take the focus off of bullying and place it on being that person mentioned above along with showing them the endless daily benefits that come with being that person.  And, we need to teach people that life is an inside job as all of their experiences start from within.


Coach Mike

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