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Words Are Weapons

by Michael Josephson,

With four young daughters, 14 and under, I frequently find myself correcting, disciplining, or simply protesting unnecessary and unkind comments certain to anger or wound a sister and evoke counterattacks that fill the air with nastiness.

Hoping to get them to think before they speak in the future, I often ask, "What did you expect to accomplish by that remark?" and "Did it make things better or worse?"

It disappoints and frustrates me that my children are so often unkind to one another and so quick to make foolish comments that have no constructive purpose. Yet it's even more troublesome when adults engage in the same senseless behavior.

It may be a husband's unfiltered remark about his wife's weight or new wrinkles, a parents' comment, "That's why you have no friends" or 'Why can't you be more like your brother?" or an aunt's unwanted advice, "If you want to get married, lose weight."

Sometimes it's the tone or timing of an otherwise proper statement that makes it sting. We have to remember that words are weapons, sometimes weapons of mass destruction.

Verbal assaulters may defend their unguided missiles with claimed innocence: "I didn't mean it that way" when the real question is "How was the remark likely to be received?"

Another lame excuse is "I was just telling the truth" without considering whether that truth needed to be said. Honesty does not preclude tact.

We may not always be able to shield ourselves from the darts and arrows of inconsiderate or mean-spirited folks, but we can resolve to be more thoughtful in our own communications.

We can be more kind more consistently. We can follow the Golden Rule. Remember, character counts.

See Also:

Choices you can make to change your life forever
The direction of our lives is determined by the choices we make every day. They accumulate and add up to our ultimate destiny. Success in life is not a gift. It doesn’t just fall on people like ripe pawpaw! It is a choice that you have to make.

Mommy Musings: 10 Things Your Newborn Will Teach You
Put aside your worries about all the things you are supposed to teach your new little baby. Here are 10 things your baby will teach you.

Perceiving the Universal in All
Here is an excellent method of moving into prayer of meditation. It can also be used as a meditation in itself.

Truths Which Aid Forgiveness
Some truths which will help us forgive others are given. (Some of them are based on various spiritual beliefs or Christian concepts which might not be acceptable to you or the subject.)

Truths For Self-Forgiveness
These truths are there to help us get free from the guilt, shame and doubt of the past, not to give license to do whatever we like in the future.

Wisdom creates a bright presence in our minds, allowing us to perceive with clarity beyond the veils of illusion. When wisdom is accompanied by Faith they create together trust in our highest truths. We are then able to pass safely through the dark and difficult corners of life feeling inner security and inner peace.

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