It is imperative to choose words with empathy. They should build bridges, not create barriers
Words are a mysterious manoeuvre of communication in an individual's life. They are the most powerful drug used by humans so if they can inspire and connect at the same time they can divide, demoralise and incite hate.
Words are invasive and their impact on different people varies because it depends on their understanding and conception. As they are used in every aspect of life, their power is immense and powerful as a result. A single phrase, an uplifting word or even a single act of kindness can change an individual’s life forever towards the betterment.
Words are what an individual uses to express themselves, thoughts and feelings. One must never underestimate words' power. A person’s choice of language can affect not only how another person feels but also how they perceive events around them. Childhood bullying, verbal abuse in domestic relationships, and even word choice by medical professionals can lead to emotional challenges. Several researchers have found that the choice of words can cause specific areas of the brain to activate and affect a person's subjective experience of pain. Pain-related words create stronger responses in many areas of the brain, including the anterior cingulate cortex and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex.
Words when used as bullets, with a feeling of superiority and condemnation will never restore a relationship to love. As seeds of support and sincerity, they can rebuild a relationship in a positive and life-affirming way. Words impact different people differently because it depends on their understanding and conception of them. They are by far the most powerful force available to humanity. Children or learners can be instilled with confidence by the words, tone, or even the tone of encouragement they receive from their parents, teachers, or coaches. This even helps promote cognitive development. Also, giving a compliment to a co-worker or a colleague positively impacts their emotional state resulting in creating a ripple effect of positivity.
When people use powerful words and phrases such as "please and thank you"; "how may I help you?"; acknowledging and appreciating work, they inspire the individual, thus making their work environment more enjoyable. Such words even help in motivating, encouraging and building mutually respectful relationships with team members, clients and customers. On the other hand, negative words along with sarcasm at times, can tear down, intimidate and discourage an individual especially young learners resulting in the release of dozens of stress-producing hormones which ultimately interrupt brain functioning. For adults, it may lead to stress, anxiety and anger followed by a disconnect in the relationship.
A word is not just a combination of letters or sounds but a functional unit that helps thoughts take shape. It’s the words that have the power and power to help, heal, hurt, harm or humiliate anyone. Since it is not in anyone’s control what others say or do to a loved one, learning how to respond in loving ways can always prove fruitful.
Remember, no one can create a better reality while complaining or crying over current problems. It is imperative to choose words carefully with empathy and intention. Words should build bridges, and opportunities and not barriers, spread love and affection and not hate and war. Always be mindful of the conversation going on in your mind, for it can destroy or uplift you. It is imperative to become aware of words because words and feelings, when directed outwardly, can rebound and cause havoc in one’s own life.
(The author is an educator)