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"It's Not What You Say..." (but sometimes it is)
by Linda Larsen

Dr. Albert Mehrabian tells us that as much as 93% of all of our communication is nonverbal. That may seem like an unrealistic amount, until you think of how many times you have either heard or said things like, "Don't use that tone of voice with me!" or, "Wipe that smirk off your face!" It may be true then, that it's not what you say, it's how you say it. Or is it? Just how important is that remaining 7%? If you're a normal human being you probably have a few "challenges" in your life right now. You may be experiencing some "difficulties." I heard one person recently proclaim that things in her life were "impossible." And here's what's interesting: Your subconscious mind responds directly to your conscious words - words either spoken or merely thought - and works to create the appropriate physiological response to the command. Therefore, if you say something is "devastating" or "unbearable" or a "overwhelming- your system goes to work to make it happen in a very real way! Physically! Dr. Norman Cousins, author of Anatomy of an Illness, said, "words can kill." He said that when a patient was diagnosed and had an actual word to define his symptoms, he got sicker. Words like, "cancer," "Parkinson' disease" and "heart disease" tended to induce extreme fear and panic in patients. Those feelings then began to undermine their body's immune systems.

I invite you to make a conscious choice to redefine your circumstances in life. Choose more empowering words to describe your situations and experiences. Overhaul your vocabulary. Take a look at some examples of how you can transform your life by transforming your language, and ask yourself.... Would you rather be:
  • "shocked" - or "amazed"...
  • "overwhelmed" - or "momentarily on pause"...
  • "OK" - or "outrageously wonderful"...
  • a "computer idiot" - or a "willing, eager student"...
  • "confused" - or "intrigued"
  • "fine" - or "ecstatic"
  • "good" - or "unbelievably outstanding"
When you start to consciously choose more empowering words, you will find you actually have healthier, more positive emotions. Whenever I encounter a situation, that I would have historically described as "frustrating" or "aggravating", I now automatically dub it "intriguing." That word choice leaves me feeling curious. Curious as to how I can change the situation around.

And when you make these substitutions - notice the responses of the people around you. They may laugh. There may be others - more negative people - who ridicule your choice and demand that you see the "real" story. The bottom line is - you win. Remember, we are not really creating our words. Our words are creating us. As Mark Twain once said, "A powerful agent is the right word. Whenever we come upon one of those intensely right words...the resulting effect is physical as well as spiritual, and electrically prompt."

So, which would you rather be, "dead tired", or a "little less than zippy?"

The choice is up to you.

Copyright Linda Larsen. All Rights Reserved.

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