Have you ever wished you had the power to make something real just by saying it? Let me break the news for you: you already have that power. In fact, we all do.
The words you use, especially those you say to yourself, have the power to become real, almost like prophecies. What you say on a regular basis, makes an imprint in your subconscious, and you end up believing it and making it a reality.
Maybe you’ve found yourself saying things like:
- “I will never find a better job.”
- “Why don’t you ever pay attention to what I say?”
- “Bad things always happen to me.”
- “Don’t do that!”
Language is powerful. Language has the ability to give you a positive or negative perspective of the events in your life, and can modify how you feel about them, and how you would respond towards those events.
Studies have found that the mind interprets what it hears in a very literal way. And it doesn’t matter if you say the words in your mind, if you actually say them out loud, or if you write them down. All these forms of expression have a strong effect in your subconscious.
If you continuously say (or write, for that matter) that you’re disorganized, lazy, that you’re a procrastinator, that you’re always late… guess what? You will start believing that you are all those things, and if you are indeed a procrastinator or a disorganized person, you won’t be able to break the patterns that make you follow those behaviors.
So, if words have the power to “become a reality”, how about if you start using the power of language to your advantage? Let’s see how we can be more optimistic by using positive language.
Start your day with strong affirmations
Think about the aspects of your life that make you feel more stressed or worried or pessimistic. Then, write down some positive statements to counteract those negative thoughts. Watch your language as you write them down. Instead of writing “I won’t procrastinate”, use positive language and say something like: “I’ll complete my to-do’s as quickly as I can”.
Be aware of what you say to yourself or others about you
As with any habit, it’s going to be hard at the beginning. But it only takes a little bit of awareness, to start “hearing” what you say or what you think. Then, start switching those negative thoughts as soon as you identify them, and make them into positive ones. For example, if you continuously say that you always procrastinate, start switching that language, and maybe say to yourself that you used to be a procrastinator, but not anymore.
Start using positive words and affirmations, being very aware of how to talk to your subconscious mind.
Be careful with absolute statements
Words like “never”, “always” and “forever” are permanent by nature; they’re used to appoint something that won’t change. But hardly anything has such permanency in real life. These and other similar terms shouldn’t be used loosely, unless you’re talking about something that certainly never changes. Put things in perspective. Think about how permanent your circumstances really are, and change your language accordingly. Instead of saying that you “never” have a good day at work, say that “today” you had to make an extra effort to do your tasks.
Beware of words that have a negative connotation
Try to replace words that are intrinsically negative, for other, more positive ones. Instead of saying that you have a “problem”, or that you can’t do something, say that you have a “situation” or a “challenge”, or that you need to learn how to do something.
Write a journal
Journaling is one of the easiest and more effective ways to purposely use more positive words in our language. It doesn’t have to be fancy or complicated; any text processor you have in your computer, or a regular composition book will do. Take a few minutes every night, and write about your day and how you felt when facing the different aspects of it. Again, watch the words you use, and change any negative statements, so that you use a more positive language.
Give yourself credit
Whenever you accomplish something, give yourself due credit for your effort and the time you put towards that goal. Some people diminish their efforts by saying that they “had” to do those things. But even when they may be “obligations”, be aware that you consciously chose to make an effort and complete those tasks. Then, pat yourself on the back and mentally (or in your journal) acknowledge the work you put towards that goal or task. This is another opportunity to use positive words, so be aware of the language you use.
Change your focus
Instead of saying that you’re dumb or that you don’t understand something, use your language in a more positive way, and reprogram your thoughts so that the reason of you not understanding something is out of you, as it most likely is. Think of the external factors that may be preventing you from achieving your goal. You could say for example, that the instructions are not as clear as you need them to be, or that you should put a little more effort to accomplish the task at hand.
Remember, words have a lot of power, and it’s in your hands to use that power to become a more positive, optimistic person.
Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you’re right. –Henry Ford
Your turn: have you caught yourself saying things that are not so nice about you? Have you tried to change that perspective by using a more positive language?