Monday, June 24, 2013

The power of words

We all have been told since we were young that our words have power. Words have the power to hurt and to heal, to do both good and bad. With our words, we can build people up, or we can tear them down. How unfortunate that so many prefer the latter. Put simply, this should not be. I would venture to say that nearly all of us have been on the other end of someone's hurtful comments, yet I would also guess that nearly all of us are still guilty of letting those kind of words come out of our mouth.

The thing I want everyone--myself included--to keep in mind is if someone hears enough negative words about him or herself they start to believe those words are true, whether it is the truth or not. It's strange how lies can become the truth if enough people believe them. I have met far too many youth who are terribly damaged because of the things others have said or continue to say about them. I have met far too many adults who are still dealing with the effects of such treatment many years later. The truth is your words do have power, and as we can learn from Spider Man--or Voltaire, if you prefer, "With great power comes great responsibility."

I also want you to keep in mind that your words are not only capable of tearing others down, or building others up; the words you speak into your own life have the power to do both good and bad. If you say you are not good enough too many times, then you start to believe it. If you believe you are completely incapable of accomplishing anything, you are already defeated. You are speaking negativity into your life. You are giving those words power over you, and it won't matter how many times others try to encourage you or build you up because you have already passed judgement on yourself. It is incredibly difficult for people to learn to see themselves as good when they believe they are not.

Seriously, no one is better at tearing me down than I am at tearing myself down. There's a reason solitary confinement is used as punishment in prisons. Too much time alone with nothing but your thoughts to keep you company is a dangerous thing. Your mind becomes the prison. You spend all your time nitpicking at yourself, dwelling on the negative, tearing yourself down, and you can't runaway from yourself. I've done this to myself way too many times. Best not to get caught up in this vicious cycle.

Do not live your life with a defeated attitude. Do everything you can to speak positivity into your life, and as much as possible, do the same for others. There will always be people out there who make themselves feel good at the expense of others. Don't add to that mix. You are all good enough. You all have a purpose. Don't ever let anyone tell you otherwise.

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