Your Words Matter
Your Words Matter – They define how you experience life.
Nothing ever works out for me.
That’s a powerful statement. It has an energy all its own. It’s an empowering statement in the sense that you are determining how your life looks and feels. If you say that nothing ever works out the way you want it to, then even if things seem to be going well, you’ll be anticipating them going wrong at some point.
It’s hard to be a man/woman these days.
Similarly, if you believe it’s hard to be a man/woman because of how the roles of men/women are changing and evolving, then that is how you will experience those changes. It could be seen as an opportunity to define what it is to be a man/woman without rigid expectations. After all, if everything’s changing, then you get to be fluid in how you express.
I’m doing the best that I can.
This too is a defining statement. Whether what you’re doing is getting you the results that you want is irrelevant. If you accept that you’re currently doing the best you can, then you can also accept there’s room for improvement. This broader perception gives you room to breathe and space to grow and evolve.
Our external words arise out of our inner dialogue. If that inner dialogue is harsh, rigid or fearful, then that is how we will experience our world.
Harsh things happen. We might meet people who say unpleasant things to us or who attempt to treat us badly. If we don’t see their behaviour as evidence of how all people behave, then it becomes just another transient moment.
My way, or no way.
If we believe that things have to be a certain way, then any deviation from that way will generate a fearful and reactive response. That reactive response will highlight where we are attached to a particular outcome. The words we use in those moments will be about resisting that outcome.
Resisting outcomes isn’t what changes outcomes. What changes outcomes is choosing a different response the next time or in the next moment. This isn’t about being falsely positive and upbeat if we don’t really feel that way. It’s about understanding the power of words to affect our emotional responses.
So if your way isn’t working for someone else, or for you for that matter, then allowing greater flexibility in how things could be, frees you up. The spirit of compromise and a willingness to be somewhat fluid in your responses might open up brand new ways that work better for all involved.
Feelings are based on thoughts and thoughts come and go.
‘I’m feeling sad right now,’ is a very different response to ‘I’ll never be happy.’ You might not be happy right now, but the sadness will pass once it’s expressed itself. If you allow that momentary sadness to define how your future will be, then it may well become true that you’ll never be happy.
Allowing happiness and sadness room to come and go and rise and fall, will create a lot more mental space. Mental space feels peaceful. And feeling peaceful goes beyond happiness and sadness. It can co-exist with both.
So the inner dialogue can be running with sad or happy thoughts, and even then peace can be present. This is because, beyond the inner dialogue, there’s space to allow those transient thoughts to come and go. Subsequently, the words that arise from this greater mental space will support a more peaceful experience of life.
You may even start to say:
‘Whatever’s happening right now may feel easy or hard to experience, but this too will pass. And I’m okay with that.’
If you really are okay with that, then you’re much more likely to experience your life as more peaceful and joyful anyway.
This article was previously published at the Good Men Project
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