Words have the power to heal and words have the power to hurt. Words, our major form of communication and sometimes we use them so simply and at times, without thought.
We have a variety of verbal and non-verbal forms of communication. These include body language, eye contact, sign language, haptic communication, and chronemics. Other examples are media content such as pictures, graphics, sound, and writing. We also have tactile communication the display of text or Braille. There are so many ways in which we communicate with others yet we rely so heavily on our words.
Have you ever stopped to think about the words you use? Whether it be describing how you feel or perhaps expressing what the weather feels like. Once you start thinking about the words you use, the power in them becomes evident. Words can really heal and words can really hurt.
I want to encourage you to use your words wisely and to really begin to think about the things you say. I challenge you (this week) to just listen to how many times you say things like ‘You NEVER do that’ or ‘You ALWAYS do that’. Personally, I think we would be well served if those two words, Never and Always, were removed from our vernacular. How often (really) does someone NEVER and ALWAYS do something. I know that these two words removed from any marriage situation surely help. Once you begin to listen to yourself, I promise, you will be surprised.
As you think about your words, also think about the fact that we know children are like sponges. It’s true, they absorb absolutely everything. If that is true then what words are they absorbing that have been spoken to them and over them? I’m not asking this to make you feel bad or bring any sort of condemnation, rather I want you to think about it because I believe it’s imperative that we speak life into and over our children. Words can heal, words can encourage and words can build. Here’s an example:
“Lucas, you never clean your room and it’s always a mess.”
“Lucas, I love it when your room is clean and how it makes you feel.”
I realise that this example is simply but let me expande. The first statement is just that a statement and an end to conversation or an opening to confrontation. The second is uplifting and creates space for growth and inspiration. There are so many more examples I could use but I think you get where I’m going with this.
Our children hear so many negative sounds in their world, whether it be through media, things others say or perhaps their own voice rehashing things that have been said. With that in mind, let’s replace those words with words of life that breath vision, dreams and hope within their little and oh so precious hearts. I promise, you will be amazed at how they respond when you begin to speak life into and over those in your world and yourself.
Go on, you can do it!