Choose Your Words

March 31, 2016

Words, words, words. When I was little I was taught, “Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words can never hurt you.” Did your family teach you that as well? We were given those words to defend ourselves from people who hurt our feelings. If we believed the magic chant we would feel strong and protected from the pain of ugly insults and hurtful words.

Did it work?

Words do hurt. Words can hurt. Words have tremendous power and the words that hurt us in our youth often still stop us cold, or hold us back, even as adults. Oh, but the words that lifted us up? Those stay with us too. There is beauty, strength and healing in positive words.

Did adults tell you to, “Use your words.”? That’s what we tell little people in my tribe. When someone’s having a temper tantrum, we say “Use your words.” We’re asking them to vocalize what doesn’t feel good.

I think I’d like to change that to “Choose your words.”…..for both adults and children.

Words label us, shame us, name us….they can anger or they can give us comfort, make us feel loved and lift our spirits. They can break us… or they can give us happiness and HOPE.

When I was young, I often heard “You’re a dreamer, Kellie.” The grown-ups in my life were trying to tell me that I might be disappointed or fail if I kept dreaming. It felt like an accusation or a bad thing! That makes me laugh now. They were trying to protect me. “Don’t get your hopes up, kid” or “I’m not getting my hopes up, because……”

What?!? How do dreams come true if you don’t get your hopes up? LOL.

Words, words, words.

I met a lady whose mother told her she had a “face only a mother could love”. As a young girl she thought that meant she was ugly and the only one who could love looking at her was her mother. When I hear that expression I think of a child whose face is covered in chocolate or peanut butter with jelly! Sadly, she didn’t hear it that way.

Actually, there is a picture somewhere in my home of Brittany Hope when she was about 3 years old. While I was distracted she discovered a tube of my lipstick. She was clad in her little footed pajamas, bathed and ready for bed. Oh, she was so pleased with herself for the artistic use of that lipstick. It was all over her face, around her head, in her hair. She was a mess. I had to laugh. That face ~ her mother so loved!

Words, words, words. They don’t mean the same thing to all of us. The tone they are used in and the body language when they are delivered changes how they make us feel, too.

Another saying I often heard as a child is one I prefer; “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Those are wise words, good words, don’t you think?

In the brilliant book, Every Word Has Power by Yvonne Oswald, PhD, she says,

“I hope that you are getting the idea that by consciously switching your words and directing your thoughts, you transform not only your perception of life but also your results.” ….and

“When you wish upon a word…all your dreams will soon be heard.”

I like that. I really, really like that quote.

I’ve got my hopes up. I AM a dreamer. I’m going to use good words, kind words…with myself and with others. I’m going to remind adults to choose their words, especially with the little people in their lives.

What if we all used compassionate, positive, beautiful, sexy, smart words….or none at all? Oh, what a world, what a lovely world that would be.

What do you think? Will you join me?

Another moment of Divine timing….this quote from T.U.T. (Mike Dooley) ;

“When it comes to the words you choose, whether in your mind or amongst friends, let them be of what you like and love. What you care about and cherish. What makes you happy. What gives you wings. What makes you dream. And very little else.”

Gosh, I love that!…

I love you…