We may not be aware of it; but the words we utter daily may have different interpretations, even if you think that they mean the same thing.
Here’s an example.
Would you rather have someone tell you that you are “slim,” or would you like to hear that you are “thin?” Being slim has a slightly positive effect because it is attributed to health and fitness.
Rather than saying you have failed, just mention that you have not yet achieved success. Get the picture? Always try to speak words in the most positive manner you can think of.
Here’s another important advice.
Never compare the negative qualities of one person with another.
A former boss of mine has this to say to me when I made an error in my previous day job, “James (not real name) is doing a much better job than you are. He’s not committing any mistake like you do.”
That crushed my heart. My boss thought this would motivate me to do better. Nope, it just hurt my feelings and lowered my self-esteem. Of course, I would never make the same mistake again after her harsh scolding. I’ve learned my lesson well. But she could have said it nicely.
Experiences arising from discouragement and condemnation will have a negative effect on the recipient.
Some parents might believe that instilling fear on their children would improve their performance. They would say, “You’re always failing. Why can’t you be like your brother? You’re such a disgrace to this family.”
Now that’s not the proper way to do it. They should inspire, encourage, and motivate their children; not belittle them even further.
They should tell their children that they have the capacity to achieve great things, if they would only put a little more effort. Teach them values that would make them feel important and loved.
You may even go as far as giving them qualities that they do not yet possess. By giving them confidence and by making them believe that they have such characteristics, they will eventually acquire such traits. Tell them how bright you think they are, and you will soon be surprised at the results. They will significantly improve if you firmly made them believe that they have the capacity to do so.
So if you ever wanted to persuade or encourage someone to do better, make sure that he or she is motivated out of inspiration, and not out of fear. Give advice that cares, and not offensive words borne out of hatred or anger.
Think first before you speak. Many relationships have been ruined by the wrong choice of words. Some people voice out anything that comes to their mind, without first filtering the good words from the bad ones. This might result in misunderstandings and arguments, which could have easily been prevented if we speak out in a way that is neutral and non-offensive.
Words are very powerful indeed. Use them responsibly for the benefit of all.