The power of words

“Handle them carefully, for words have more power than atom bombs,” wrote Pearl Strachan, a British politician. Words form our communication patterns.

The way they are woven in speech could either become an ornament to beautify our personality or a wreath of wrath marring our personality. Words must therefore be selected wisely, used prudently and stored intelligently.

Words provide the essential  inputs in the process of transmitting our feelings, opinions and ideas to those around. They reflect our attitude and our own understanding of the way the world functions. They are a mirror of how we view life and the philosophies that guide our actions. While kind and benevolent words reflect an empathetic disposition, curt and aggressive words indicate apathy and intolerance.

It is commonplace to use words that suggest harshness over humility, aggression over amiability and apathy over empathy. Such words bring out cynicism over optimism. They dampen communication and result in animosity and bitterness. On the contrary, when words chosen are filled with grace over grumpiness, softness over callousness and considerate over dominant, they evoke feelings of co-operation and harmony.

These  opposing styles of using words have the powers of a magnet, capable of attracting either resentment or goodwill to the speaker. For, words that emit negativism will attract rebellion just as words coated with sweetness will attract support. “Cold words freeze, hot words scorch them, and bitter words make them bitter and wrathful words make them wrathful. Kind words also produce their own image on men’s souls; and a beautiful image it is. They soothe, and quiet and comfort the hearer,” observed Blaise Pascal, French mathematician, physicist and philosopher.

This is also what Queen Elizabeth of Hungary opined, “Even if we do not have any money for alms, we have a mouth to encourage and comfort others.”

Having a good collection of positive words will transform foggy and incongruous men to men of clarity and understanding. To this end, author Robin Sharma suggests: “Pull out your journal or a clean white sheet of paper and record an inventory of the words you most frequently speak.

The more aware you can become of the quality of your language, the more choice you will give yourself. Writing things down raises your self-awareness.  Once you have identified your most commonly used words, do another list. Articulate a series of spectacularly positive words that will serve you, words that superstar in your field using. Bring them into your daily vocabulary.

You will discover that speaking these words will make you feel better. More powerful. More passionate. And when you feel great feelings, guess what? You will do great things!”

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