Monday, April 14, 2014
Something I've realized lately is how often I use the word "hate" in my everyday language. As simple as agreeing with someone in their story of being stuck in traffic: "I hate it when that happens!"
The truth is, there are few things I actually hate. Hate is very powerful, and I fear that too many of us have become blasé in our speech, too complacent with not giving any thought to the words we use.
The danger is words have weight.
Even when we aren't using the word in the context we really mean it, it still has weight, it still has an impact. The more you use one word, the more weight it has, the more power you give it. And when it's a negative, well, it's just as powerful as a positive. And that goes for words spoken in your mind, the things you say to yourself. They create ideas that we live by over time. It's no wonder that Christopher Nolan used the notion in Inception of a tiny idea and how it can change the course of someone's entire life.
Have you ever noticed how a single negative thought or word will usually ripple into more negative thoughts, like dominoes? And before you know it, the weight is too much and you are powerless to stop the onslaught. But you are feeding the thoughts, the words. You give them power.
So why not give that power to positive? Instead of feeding someone's (or your own) negativity, why not say what you really mean: "I agree with you" or "I know what you mean." People, first and foremost, want to be heard. Let them know you hear them, that they're not alone. Then give them something positive in return, whether it's through spoken words, or a gesture (never underestimate the power of a hug), or even just a thought.
I recently read an article via A Cup of Jo by Akhil Sharma who prays for others when he's feeling bad. It could be so simple as thinking the words "I love you." It's such a beautiful idea, one that I feel compelled to try. I know I'd rather have less hate in my life and more love.
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