On average, people speak about 20,000 words a day. I’m not sure who had the fun job of figuring that out but even the thought of it exhausts me! They say that women probably speak more than men but I can almost guarantee that is not true in my household. I may not speak 20,000 words a day but that doesn’t mean I’m not thinking or writing them…but probably not.
Your words truly matter. However, what matters most is not the number of words you speak but which words you choose to use and the purpose for them. Each day gives you an opportunity to encourage, inspire, empower and motivate. Or, you can also destroy, shatter, discourage or tear down.
Children are especially impacted by the words we use towards them. What you tell your child can stick with them throughout their life. I remember being told in junior high that I was not at the proper reading level that I should be. I was only reading at a 4th grade level. Now I’m sure the reason that my teacher pointed this out was out of concern, but looking back it really affected how I view myself. What I heard her saying was: You are stupid. You can’t read. You should be better than this. You are a failure. For many years I thought I hated to read. The reality is I can read and I love to read. I have no idea at what reading level I am at, but at this point in my life it truly doesn’t matter. I had to let go of this label that was put on me (or that I put on myself).
We should also be thoughtful on when and how we speak. Some people feel that they should offer their opinion on something at all times without thinking about the words they are using and how this will impact the person. Some people use their words to complain which is draining to those around them. They choose to be negative instead of trying to solve the issue that they are complaining about. Others may use tones that are hurtful, insulting or belittling to someone. Trying to think before we speak can help us navigate if it is the right time, the right attitude and the right words.
The words we tell ourselves are some of the most powerful. We need to stop telling ourselves that we are worthless, fat, ugly or stupid and renew our minds with positive statements. We believe what we think. Replace these negative words with the words of affirmations that you need to believe in yourself.
I have learned the importance of surrounding yourself with people who encourage you. It feels amazing when someone believes in your potential. My husband is one of my biggest supporters. Every morning before he leaves for work we pray together. We have also included a time of saying affirmations to one another. It is a great way to start the day and use your words to encourage and build up the one that you love.
You have the privilege of using words that have the potential to change people’s lives. Make sure the words you use are useful, convey hope, and impact them in a positive way.