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The Three Types of Teachers, Part 1

Of course, there are many different types of teachers. For this discussion, I will split them into three types.

We’ll build a little on my previous post. Here are the three types as I see them:

  1. A teacher who doesn’t want you to excel
  2. One who accepts your excelling, but not past them
  3. One who has a deep longing for you to soar, just as a loving parent wishes for their child

Who are teachers? They can be pretty much anyone… your friend, father, mother, sister, brother, a person you work with as a coach, a workshop leader, an author, a preacher, or your boss. Maybe even your neighbor. A teacher can be anyone we work with on our personal growth.

The Teacher That Doesn’t Want You to Excel
Here, we find that there is a difference between what you are told and the actions and behavior coming from that teacher.

You can tell quite easily by looking at how they reward you for your growth. A teacher who is afraid of you and your growth will do his best to minimize your accomplishments while maximizing your failures. They know that doubt and discouragement will keep you down, keep you in a submissive position. They’ve probably learned this technique very well because it was done to them at one time.

This teacher will also focus on you being less than, but more importantly, they will always bring the focus back to how big, how accomplished, how revered, how special THEY are. They enjoy keeping you, and others, in that “less than” position in order to have that ego rush of comparison readily available to them. These are the teachers that brag about what they have, what they’ve done, what others say about them. They will often weave the derogatory comments about you into passive aggressive statements sandwiched between positive statements about themselves as a comparison. Their intent is to elevate their status while keeping you submissive and subservient.

You will especially notice the threat expanding if you begin to excel in HIS area of expertise. God help you if you begin to surpass his expertise.

This type of teacher is an expert at keeping others in a feeling of doubt and discouragement. Even if he is a high school drop out and you are a PhD, this person can keep you from rising to your own greatness. And if he is a particularly nasty type, this type of teacher will take your own knowledge, your own insight, and your own greatness and claim it as his own. How many times do you hear of people taking credit for others’ ideas as their own?

This creates even further discouragement and doubt. And then, he’s got you exactly where he wants you.

If this type of teacher has a group of people around him that he has already done this to, they will expect you to act as they have. The additional peer pressure will come in many forms. Additionally, they will take delight in acting out towards you for the unconscious resentment they still feel from when it was done to them.

This is exactly how CULTS are created. And just because someone has not identified your group as a cult or its leader as a sociopath, it doesn’t mean that you’re not living in one, or experiencing the same type of emotional subterfuge.

Part of the trip here is that, because of competition, we seek to win even though we’ve lost. We want to find a way to win next time or sometime in the future.

However, in order for you to do that, you must become better than the teacher at what he does worst. In other words, you have to act as he does and try to win at that game. You find yourself in a loop, but this loop is a downward loop.

This is why you must get out of situations like this and learn to avoid them. It’s a dangerous game, and you have to escape the gravity. The only way to do so is to first forgiving yourself and accept the loss.

The group might say that your loss is your self destruction. However, if you look deeper and get help, it is a huge, momentous giant victory of self respect. You’ve escaped a situation that was holding you in a downward spiral game. It is counter-intuitive thinking and can be difficult, and often people don’t find a way to escape. This is why I really recommend getting help to see the situation you’re in from an external viewpoint. Those within the group will not be able to see it.

You see, they’re stuck in an echo chamber where the only beliefs they allow into their world are ones that they agree with. This often happens in politics, and individuals who do this in political situations often find themselves stuck in other areas as well.

I know of one person who goes around blocking people on social networking sites who have opposing viewpoints so he doesn’t get angered by them. This is also an individual who finds himself working with a teacher who won’t let him grow.

I will begin to dissect this nasty bugger with some clear examples. And if you’re wondering if you’re caught up in a similar situation, please write me and ask.

Tomorrow I’ll discuss the second type of teacher… the one who will let you rise, but not above them.

For an example, here is an excellent blog post describing an experience like what I describe. Remember, it doesn’t have to be this blatant, it can be very insidious and subtle and still be cult-like activity.

Note: I posted this as part of a 3 part series. Some people took this the wrong way and thought I was talking about them. I decided to post part 2 and 3 now instead of waiting so that you can see all three types contextually. Please take this knowledge for whatever it is worth. If it helps you, great. If it bothers you, I apologize. My intent is to help people extract themselves from difficult situations and prevent others from getting involved in them.

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  1. Hi Mark,
    What an excellent blog. I grew up in this type of family and married a man who was of this thinking and worked for another who did the same things as you describe. Now, I undersstand what was going on. Took a long time to break out of the pattern of being a victim of this. Look around and the pattern is repeated all over. The news is full of it in politics. It seems to be some sort of “power trip” to keep a following.

  2. Man, this guy named Jay Valens I key figure in the relationship coaching I’ve been doing took the time to write me a personally hurtful message in an email and slams the hell out of me on his website… God bless you for reaffirming that for me… Thanks for being around for us Mark.

  3. While reading this it made me think of another situation. Social sarcasm and joking makes me feel this same way. Everyone likes to joke and cut each other down, everyone seems to be able to handle it and enjoy it as entertainment except for me. I try to play along and admit it is funny when I come up with a funny zinger. Like everyone else I don’t mean it destructively, but deep down I really feel this is unneccessary. If I lived the rest of my life without this experience I know it would be for the better. I don’t feel your description of this situation is limited to teachers.

    1. Hey, October. Thanks for your comment. My further point is that anyone who does this to you and you learn from is your teacher, too.

  4. I am a public school teacher and I hope I am always the third kind–the one who wants you to excell, really excell. Check out my blog–nothing to buy–just encouragement.

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