Where’s your Thank you? Where’s your Please? And, what about excuse me? We often find ourselves reminding our kids to use these golden words in their daily vocabulary. Yet time and again, we fail to use them. When was the last time we used “excuse me” when interrupting a conversation our child was having with a friend? When was the last time we said “thank you” when they made an attempt to clean up without us asking them to? When was the last time we said “please” when we asked them to make a quick run to the neighborhood grocery store?
Words have the power that is far beyond what we might expect. They have the power to destroy; destroy self esteem, the power to strengthen; strengthen the loving relationship in a family, society and the nation at large and the power to encourage; encourage and uplift one another materially as well as spiritually. So it is extremely important that we carefully weigh our words especially when speaking to our children. Be it when correcting them, disciplining them or even praising them.
Now, unless we live in a perfect world, amidst perfect circumstances chances are that we as parents will often find ourselves saying hurtful words to our children, which we often later regret. Some of the underlying causes of such outbursts are; anger, frustration and many a times lack of rest. Well, the reasons may be endless, but the repercussions it has on the minds of our children and their emotional growth is quite substantial.
I had recently read about an apple experiment to help understand how words can affect our bodies physiologically. I thought it would be interesting to carry out the same to actually measure the impact of our so called gift of the gab. Here’s how it went:
I cut an apple into equal halves and stored them in plastic jar. One was labelled G-Good apple and the other B-Bad apple. Everyday for eight days, I spoke kind, nice, uplifting words to the Good apple and harsh, nasty words to the Bad apple. Yes I opened the lid each time I spoke to both the apples :), many a times to the ridiculous stares from my house-help and my daughter of course. Nevertheless I persevered despite their confused look! 🙂 As you can see at the end of eight days, the results are quite astonishing. The Good apple is in much better shape than the apple who I spoke to harshly, which is completely rotten.
Most often, we never see the negative impact speech can have in such overt, physical ways. But the truth of the matter is, it does. Imagine what impact it can have on the emotional as well as physical growth of our children? If we don’t mind our speech, we will be left to mend a lot of things as they grow up. We can let our words be weapons of mass destruction, or, we can let our words be instruments of mass awakening, awakening of love and respect for all.
Indeed, words do have power; What power are your words going to release today?