There is a rumor out there that certain words used during conversations will make life – ahem – challenging. That is a belief (opinion) that if a person says negative words, the results will be negative. It is time that I debunk this myth.
First, I share my belief that there is a tremendous power in the words we choose to use. I also believe many words can be misunderstood or misinterpreted since words often can have more than one meaning. It is not the words by themselves where I see the power; it is the message I intend and the words I speak with which have the greatest effect on me.
For the purpose of this writing, I am defining the word negative as something harmful, bad, or lacking. Negative words that can cause a person to flinch or become defensive during a conversation might be less alarming when an entire statement is heard. By focusing on a conversation and the message that the speaker is conveying, the negative word becomes less powerful as it is when by itself. It is also my belief that I speak with words, emotions, and intentions. An example of a powerful word on its own can be found in the word ‘love’. The statement “I love you” will change ‘love’ from a verb to a declaration because of the emotions and intentions which are attached.
Since we speak in sentences, it is the sentence that is important. In the examples below, I focus on the word to show how words that can be construed as negative can viewed in a more beneficial way.
No may be defined as a preferred response to a request. “No, there is no money available for raises this year.” It can also be eliminate something and improve a situation. “No work for me this week as I am on vacation!”
Not is understood to negate a statement. “I am not able to sleep.” It can also nullify something. “I am not mad at you.”
Never places a thought of no time in the past or future. “I am never going find a job.” It can also mean there is ‘not for a moment’ “Never forget that I love you.”
Should is used to imply an obligation. When this word is used and based on another person’s opinion and suggestion. “I have been told that I should save my money for a rainy day.” Maybe, a better suggestion could be, “I should find ways to increase my income so I can spend more money on me.”
Need can mean essential, important, necessary, or requiring an action. If somebody uses need as a form of self-talk and as a threat, it becomes a fear. That is when a person may say “I am broke and need money.” By recognizing that it can be turned around and used in a positive way, the message is much better. “I need money for food and want to explore ways to obtain it.”
I define negative words as words of contrast. They are not negating statements. They can be used to clarify and nullify thoughts, concepts, actions, and preferences. If we can nullify thoughts that cause us harm by using negative words, they become words of empowerment. If used to prohibit something beneficial, they can energize thoughts that serve no good purpose. This is why I choose to speak and think with my intention louder than my words and focus on the what I want to say regardless if common thought that words are good or bad.
When a negative word can benefit me and build on my intention to create love, hope, or joy, I will not be afraid of my words. This is because when I speak with love, hope, and joy as the spaces between my words, life will become even better for me.