Be mindful when it comes to your words. A string of some that don’t mean much to you, may stick with someone else for a lifetime.―Rachel Wolchin
As we go about our daily lives, it’s easy for us to speak our minds freely without realizing the impact of our words. Many of us make comments derived from our passing thoughts and it may never occur to us how these words affect the one listening.
Be careful with your words. Once they are said, they can be only forgiven, not forgotten.
Words are powerful – with such power, we should choose what we say wisely. Kind words spread love and compassion, encourage, inspire and can go a long way in one’s personal development. Hurtful words can break down a person’s spirit, stick in their minds for years and chip away at their happiness and self-esteem.
Does this mean we need to walk on eggshells when interacting with everyone? Well, that depends on what you’ve observed so far in the way people react to your words. If you’ve often noticed a negative response and people tend to express hurt or sadness when interacting with you, it may be time to be more mindful of your words.
Another crucial time to speak mindfully is when you have a disagreement with someone. This is difficult because it’s easy to lose focus and get lost in emotions, but concentrating on truly listening with respect and patience while regulating yourself can stop you from permanently damaging a relationship or hurting someone deeply. Be sensitive to the other person when choosing words and try to state facts instead of words coming from a place of frustration and anger.
Perhaps one of the biggest challenges we have today is living in the age of the Internet. With social media platforms and blogs, we normally see people mind dumping their thoughts, gossiping, or commenting without consideration for the feelings of others. Hiding behind a computer makes it even easier for society to carelessly use words without taking responsibility for the consequences. Hurtful words are easily used on the internet because there is no personal interaction between people and we don’t see the sadness caused after leaving upsetting remarks. The use of wounding words on the Internet is dangerous and can pave the way to online bullying, an issue that has become so prevalent, anti-bullying groups are being formed all around the world and schools have started taking it seriously with stricter regulations against it.
So how can we speak mindfully? The first step is to take a moment to think about what you want to say and how you want to say it before saying it. The delivery, tone of your words and even body language play a big part in how others perceive you. Make a choice to use loving speech. It may seem restrictive at first, but being the observer of yourself is important and, as with all mindful practices, it gets easier over time.
Your words have power. Speak words that are kind, loving, positive, uplifting, encouraging, and life-giving.
So remember to choose loving language when speaking. Expressing words of gratitude to a stranger, friend or family member can warm someone’s heart for days or be a wonderful memory for years. Sending random thank you notes to a teacher or emailing a friend to reminisce and appreciate good times can strengthen bonds. A simple compliment to a stranger may turn around a bad day and words of encouragement to a young child could influence them for a lifetime.
Words are like a super powers – it’s important we use our power for good and not evil.