A black chalkboard with "words have power" written in thick chalk lines.
Change Your Words

A group of this year’s graduating seniors spoke recently in our church. Every one of them made the statement in one form or another that life is hard. It had never struck me until I listened to that sentiment repeated over and over how often we say things like that. “Life is hard.” “Life is full of challenges to overcome.” They say that how we think and speak shapes our world. If that is true—and I believe it is—then if we say, “Life is hard,” aren’t we guaranteeing that it will be? Maybe it is time to change our words.

Life is exciting! Life is an adventure! Life is good!

Two people jumping joyfully in the air silhouetted against the setting sun.

Now, I realize that life can at times be challenging, but is that necessarily a bad thing? Maybe the “adventures” that come our way are not exactly what we had in mind. Maybe we would even prefer that life not be so “exciting.” As with all things in life perception is key. If we choose to see things as hard and as trials we must endure, they will be hard, our burdens will be very heavy. If, instead, we can choose to see challenges as good things, things that will help us grow, that will shape us into someone better, perhaps those burdens will be easier to bear. The “hard”, while still difficult, will lift us up instead of pull us down.

Words have power. In a way they program our actions and our emotional responses. If we choose them carefully, we can, in a sense, reprogram our perceptions which in turn can shift our world-view and maybe attract more positive experiences into our lives. “Life is fun!” Change your words. Change your life.

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