Whether you are in elementary school, in business or in your real-life setting, you need to be aware of the words you use because words can be powerful and that is what we will talk about today…how words matter.
“Words are singularly the most powerful force available to humanity. Words have energy and power with the ability to help, to heal, to hinder, to hurt, to harm, to humiliate and to humble.”
Words do matter in every situation. If you are what you eat, then are you what you say as well? Let’s think about our children and if you don’t have children, think about yourself as a child. If you are told how incredibly amazing and intelligent you are, you would feel great and after a while you would start to believe it. Now let’s flip the switch. Imagine being told you are stupid and will never amount to anything because you are a loser. Flash forward a short while later and where might this scenario take this child? Even think about something so harmless as you’re too little to do that or you aren’t tall old enough or even you are not ready to learn that. Every single word that we hear can tear us down or build us up. So which camp will you choose to be a part of?
It’s the combination of the words, how we use them and how our minds wrap themselves around them. Whether you say things out loud or have them running through your head, we can make the choice whether to take the positive or negative path. Our words do matter.
Let’s see some ways to use words in a powerful and positive way.
1. Practice Compliments-This is something I do every single day. I give someone that I don’t know a compliment. You will never know what you have done for that person that day in that moment. Don’t give the compliment and wait for one in return. You might get one or you might not. The point is giving one will make you both feel great.
2. Practice positive affirmations-I know this sounds weird to do but remember, you are the one that is listening to that self-chatter. Instead of thinking this dress makes me look fat, how about thinking how great this color is on you or how confident this makes you feel. Instead of thinking you are not smart enough to do the presentation, change it to that you are going to share some incredible information with your colleagues that can help them with their jobs. It’s a change in your mindset and a rewind of the tapes in your head. If you can’t come up with anything positive immediately, make a list of positive quotes and put them all around you and practice saying them out loud. You’ll get the hang of it…and your mind will be waiting to hear them.
3. Think before you speak-We all come into situations that can change our attitudes in a blink. Before you say something and react to that, think, breathe and decide how you can respond without being so reactive. Don’t think for one minute I am saying to ignore what is said. I’m saying to think carefully about what the message is you want to convey and do it professionally and intelligently. This is where learning new words can come in handy.
4. If you have done something that is wrong, learn to apologize. Own your mistake and understand how your words may have made a negative impact on someone or something. Don’t say you are sorry for the weather or something you have no control over. That is a different conversation for later. Apologizing when you mean it is very powerful and again…words matter.
5. Remember what you are grateful for. We all have so many things to be thankful for…and not only in November, our Thanksgiving month. I’ve noticed that people have forgotten how to say thank you. Two tiny little words that when said, can mean the world to someone else. Change your mindset, change your world. How about doing that for someone else?
As Dave Hedges said, “The words you speak are powerful. They can mend a broken heart and help repair a shattered mind. They can also destroy a person’s confidence and make people feel worthless. Choose your words carefully.”
Remember, words are free. It’s how you use them that might cost you.
Judy Hoberman www.sellinginaskirt.com