The power of words.

Words hold incredible power, don’t they?

As someone who has tinkered around with the written word for most of my life, I learned this fact early on. I remember carefully crafting a handwritten letter to my mom in high school, when we didn’t quite see eye to eye (wink)– I felt I could best express myself in writing. In college, I surprised myself in creative writing classes with a knack for story-telling and perspective; today, my most successful pieces are those fueled by personal experiences. Even as a child, I felt the exhilaration the right words can bring when I scrawled a simple question to a boy I liked: “Do you like me?” He’d responded by checking the “Yes” box… and written in a comment: “A lot!”

And no one forgets the first time a close friend’s words break your heart.

Harsh words leave scars on our souls, and can change who we are without our permission. It’s taken me 39 years to sort of realize that when people hide behind hurtful language, it’s their issue- not mine. Insecure people can attempt to use words to damage others, to make someone feel bad or doubt their path. With the right perspective, the opposite can occur. Those words can empower you- renew your confidence in your choices. And when that happens, you can respond intelligently- possibly even using some of the most powerful words I know: thank you.

I wrote a piece about the power of words for Elephant Journal. Take a peek at the article here!

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Tell me about your experiences with the power of language! Have words changed the course of your life?

For more of my writing elsewhere on the web, visit this page.

10 replies »

  1. Lover of words myself – Beautiful Post:) Words can be good and positive or bad and negative. Words can lift you up or cut you down. Words are powerful! I am learning to be more mindful of thinking before speaking – open mouth and insert foot is not always nice. Happy Hump Day – Congrats on the Article!!!

  2. I went over. I also had never seen your little “Elsewhere” page. I had no idea you contributed in so many places! I can hardly keep up with the day-to-day over here, much less write for others. I commented at the Elephant Journal…really enjoyed the read. Currently working out a sensitive issue between what’s appropriate and what’s not for email and texting. Cheers, Amber!

    • I’m glad you found the “Elsewhere” link! It’s one thing to publish my own ramblings here, but another to have someone else deem it worthy of publishing. I hope the issue you’re dealing with is resolved quickly. When in doubt, say it in person.

  3. Excellent post, I’ve always loved and cherished a handwritten note from someone or even just a kind word. However, there was a time that I didn’t because the words were mean and hurtful, obviously it was high school and a friend was no longer a friend for reasons I couldn’t understand. I think about it every now and then and wonder what I did wrong and when I really get down to it, the whole thing was about insecurity, not on my part but hers. But, it doesn’t make it hurt less. All I can do is learn from it and move on.

  4. I can think of cruel words said to me, but mostly I remember mean things I’ve said. Sigh… can’t unsay it. Thankfully we forgive and learn, and in the process, teach others how we want to be treated. Wishing you and your man whispery, starry-eyed exchanges forever and ever amen (don’t doubt it one bit). 🙂

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