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Power of Words

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Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me. Have you ever stopped to actually think about this phrase? Bones will break, but words… words can truly hurt. There have been too many real life traumas and too many real life incidents for anyone to support this phrase and believe in the message behind its words. Each word in the English language has a specific meaning, and many are meant to provoke emotion.

Words can mean so much from the 3 words I love you that everyone wants to hear to the 3 words that can scar you forever, I hate you. Every word has a meaning and every word will leave a lasting impression on you or someone else. Talking is a daily necessity for most, and it’s very tough for people to stay silent for long periods of time. Talking is your main way of communication, the main way you can get your feelings and ideas heard. If you are the only silent one in a room, it will be very hard for you to get attention or be noticed. Talking comes so naturally to most of us, that when we do it we hardly ever think about what we are actually saying and what's actually coming out of our mouths.

We speak without thinking, all of us… me included. I only started thinking about what is actually coming out of my mouth when I started writing this speech. We often don’t take serious the power of the tongue to assault and its ability to devastate someone. Proverb 12:18 says “reckless words pierce like a sword”. Though it’s never something considered dangerous, your mouth is one of your most powerful weapons.

Physical pain is of course nothing enjoyable, it hurts… but at some point that pain will dissolve into a memory of hurt. Scars heal and pain fades then all your left is the memory. The pain of words is much different; it can stay with you forever and taunt you throughout your life time. While physical pain can kill your pride or glory, mental pain and the pain from words can kill your spirit. Jane Goodall once said “it is much harder to forget a word and it is a slap words do not go away, they just echo throughout your life.”

Each and every day my friends and I call each other names. That’s the way we joke with each other, and I don’t think any of us have ever thought of what we are actually saying, or thought that it could actually be hurting. To anyone except for us these words would sound viscous and hurtful, even though to us they mean nothing. I recently read something that was a ‘how to’ paper on boosting your self esteem. One thing they said was to ignore all of the bad names you have ever been called, whether it was meant to hurt you or not. Every word, whether it is meant to cause you pain or meant as a joke, will stay with you; at times when you are at your worst, or times when you are feeling bad about yourself those words will come back to haunt you.

The names we are called and the words we use not only mentally scar us and others, but they can also turn into something so much bigger. People can deliberately use their words as weapons, they use them with the intent to inflict emotional injury… and that injury can stay with you forever or in too many cases cause people to attempt or be successful in ending their own lives. When I went online trying to find information on the real effect of words and the types of problems they cause people I found more then I expected. One site I found particularly interesting was called bullying online dot com.

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