Why does it matter what you say?
Words have power. They can do harm, no matter what the old “sticks and stones” nursery rhyme tells us.
In my play, Mr. Long Said Nothing, the father of a young Kathrine Landers advises his daughter that “Once something is said, it can’t be unsaid, only forgiven.” Unfortunately, I have a tongue that gets me in trouble because I don’t always have a filter, especially when I’ve become emotional over an issue.
On the night before the 2016 presidential election, I allowed my emotions to get the best of me because I had endured a very hard day earlier, and I chose to reply to some hateful posts on Facebook with harmful words of my own. Instead of wielding the power of forgiveness and mercy, a power we all have at our disposal, I wielded the pain of cruel words aimed at people I love and cherish, just because we are on opposite side of some hot button issues.
Luckily for me, I was forgiven by those people after I reached out and apologized, but the fact remains that there may still be scars.
In some cases, it’s necessary to tell the cold, hard truth, but even then, it should always be done with tact. And sometimes the best avenue is simply silence.
Social media has created an opportunity for people to hide behind their computers and say things they normally wouldn’t to someone’s face. We need to ask ourselves, before we post something bravely while hidden behind our monitors or smart phones, whether or not it is something we would say in someone’s presence and if the words we have in mind are uplifting or harmful.
This week’s Positive Review: Your local fall festival
Everyone has bad days when everything just seems to go wrong all at once. Sometimes bad news follows more bad news, followed by more bad news.
How do you change, or at least lessen, the negative vibes and bad mojo you’re feeling?
The truth is, many times it just has to pass. The sun has to dawn a new day. But there are some steps you can take to try and add a little silver lining to the gloom.
The first step is always recognizing that it’s just a bad day and it WILL pass.
Get your head around the fact that this is not the norm and tomorrow can be better. (By the way, if it IS the norm, take my advice and see a professional about it. There may be a clinical issue that can be resolved and change your life for the better.)
So what can you do while you wait for the next sunrise and all the loveliness it shall bring?
You need to get your mind off the negative stuff. Thinking about the negative stuff only makes it worse.
Talk to someone about it. A spouse, a close friend or relative who is a good listener is a huge help when you’re feeling “BLAH”. I emphasize that it needs to be someone who is a Good Listener. Get it off your chest and out into the air where all the negative Ju-Ju can dissipate.
Take the rest of the day off and do something you like, if possible. I run my own company and have that option. Two or three times in the last ten years, I’ve found it necessary to call it a day early and goof off because the day is just sucking and I Can. I often go see a movie when I’m out of town and away from the family because I get lonely and I know that sitting in a dark theatre with a good story, a HUGE bucket of butter-slathered popcorn, and a soda the size of a water tower will help me take my mind off the boring hotel room.
Listen to a positive podcast. There are tons of great podcasts that are geared not only to lift you up, but there are so many to choose from that you can really fine tune them to your particular interests.
Write someone an inspiring letter. I have found that when I am really down, I can sit and write an encouraging letter to someone I know who is have a difficult time. I tell them how I’m thinking and praying for them, how I am always there for them and how I am sure things are going to get better. Before you know it, you’ve not only created some correspondence that may meet a great need in someone’s life, but you’ve lifted your own self up through your encouraging words.
If it fits your life, pray. As a Christian, one of the most rewarding things I can do is spend personal time with God. I can read my bible and feel better, but especially when I pray, I find my spirit healing and many times moving from a mood of sorrow to a mood of rejoicing.
Read a good book. Again, you’re taking yourself out of the world around you that stinks and into a fantasy world where you can witness amazing and wonderful things. Even if it’s not necessarily an uplifting tale, at least it’s somebody else’s problems and yours are tucked neatly away for a time in the back of your mind.
Take a nap. You might just need a good rest.
The point is to take yourself out of the stuff that’s got you down. I’m not telling you to ignore your problems, but problems are something we all have and you can face them much better with a positive outlook.
This week’s positive review: The literary works of Nicholas Sparks