Choose Your Words With Care



Many of us were told as children that sticks and stones might break our bones but that words would never hurt us. It is a well intentioned lesson ignores the obvious truth that words can do more than just hurt you.

Words can break, batter, maim and destroy you.

It is different when you are a grownup and you share something about someone in the public arena. Sometimes the person you are speaking about is in a position where people have expectations about who they are and what kind of person they should be.

If we have learned anything during the age of reality television it is that we set impossible standards for our leaders to follow and when they demonstrate their humanity we shake our heads and wonder why they called the lightning down upon their heads.

We look at their misdeeds and declare they should have been smarter. They should have known better and then we lock the cell door, turn off the lights and move to the next bright and shiny object.

It is truly shameful behavior and we diminish ourselves with it.

“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” ― George Bernard Shaw

If you should find yourself on the wrong side of those words and discover that all you once knew has changed you can choose to respond in a number of different ways.

Ask me for my gut response and I’ll probably direct you to the words of Mr. Shaw because in life we have limited control. We can save money for retirement and talk about what we want to do but there is no guarantee we will see those things materialize as we envision.

More often than not life will smack you in the head with a monkey wrench and then wait to see if you fall down or keep moving forward.

Many things can be taken from you but without catastrophic injury you won’t lose “you.” You’ll always be around and you’ll always have yourself to use as a canvas to paint, draw and or sculpt.

Look at the man/woman in the mirror and think about who you are and then picture who you want to become and then do it.

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  1. Joshua Wilner/A Writer Writes April 11, 2014 at 9:00 am

    Lori That is so true. The words from childhood can remain years later.

  2. Lori April 10, 2014 at 8:30 am

    Hi Josh,
    I do believe words are important. They are our most-often method of communicating – anything! It’s funny that we grew up with the sticks and stones cry – it was so inaccurate. Our worlds are built with the words which define us and so much damage was done to us by children when we were children ourselves.

  3. Mary Stephenson March 11, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    Hi Josh

    Yeah I used to hate that saying “words will never hurt you”. Actually they can hurt a lot more than a few physical hits. Not that I want either.

    But one person destroyed someone’s reputation at the company I worked for and got him fired. He had 4 young children. Don’t know if he deserved to be fired or not, but she caused the whole thing and they used to be friends. Knowing him quite well I doubt that he did anything personally to her. She has been proven time and again to lie and throw people “under the bus” causing so much grief for them. When you do bad things the monkey will comeback to bite you in the end. High blood pressure, heart problems, cancer, stroke, it all comes back.

    I can look back on nasty words and try not to let it become a part of me, as usually it is the person that delivered them so thoughtlessly is the one with the biggest lack of self-esteem.


    • Joshua March 11, 2014 at 10:57 pm

      Hi Mary,

      I have wondered from time to time if Karma is real or not. There is certainly no doubt in my mind that some people reap what they sow but I would be lying if I said I didn’t “hope” a few more received their just rewards too.

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