Do you ever notice how certain language feels weak to say and/or hurts to hear? As women, this is especially true. We use words that keep us safe, censored and in the good books of all. Or, some of us are the opposite and to hide their heart, using hurtful language to maintain the walls they’ve erected. I’m not one for censorship and despite supporting freedom of speech there’s a few things we really need to stop saying to maximize a positive influence and to empower ourselves to become the bad ass women and friends we know we can be.
1. Who Cares?
Responding with ‘who cares’ to somebody’s plight is a dickhead move. It’s says you’re not listening and because you wouldn’t care about this particular situation the other person shouldn’t care either. But we’re human and we do care about shit. So stop saying who cares because I care. I care about the outcome of the problem. I care about my thoughts and feelings. I care about the thoughts and feelings of anyone else involved. The situation has caused an ugly disruption and I friggin’ care! This is why we’re talking about it. We’re trying to find another way to look at it with someone else’s input to hopefully find resolution. So even if you don’t care, perhaps ask, “why do you care about this?” And see where the conversation goes.
2. Everything Happens for a Reason.
Even if it’s true or you believe it to be true, you never say this to somebody in the midst of their troubles. When someone is in pain or experiencing grief or anger or angst telling them that everything happens for a reason diminishes the person’s feelings. Nobody feels better after hearing that except maybe you because you think you’ve just said something really helpful. It is not helpful. It is discounting somebody’s experience and it is trying to make sense of something senseless. If, and this is a big if, there is a reason for something happening the person going through it has to find it on their own. You are not the person to say this. An alternative, “I don’t know why this happened but I want you to know I am here for you” is much more helpful. Use that.
3. Sorry. Sorry. Sorry.
This one is for me. I am a perpetual sorry sayer. I say it when I bump into someone. I say it when someone bumps into me. I am constantly apologizing. In high school my friend’s dad said, “You say sorry a lot.” I responded, “oh sorry.” He looked at me with disappointment and said, “What are you sorry for?” I’m sorry for saying sorry? I’m sorry for being the person who says sorry all the time? I’m sorry for being weak and meek? I wasn’t sure but I know I’m working on this one now.
I’m done wasting sorries.
Eventually the word losing it’s meaning and it’s power and now, my sorries probably don’t mean as much. Be conscious of when you say sorry and for what you’re sorry for. Are you actually sorry for that woman bumping into you? Probably not. Words are powerful; sorry should be one of them and not a word we haphazardly throw around out of insecurity.
We need to throw this word out in this context. Think of how often you say this: I just think. I just thought. I just want. I just need. Using ‘just’ removes full ownership of your thoughts and feelings. It diminishes what you’re saying because you’re essentially adding in a caveat, one that says, “I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or step on anyone’s toes so I’ll JUST say this.” If you think something or believe something, own that shit. I know. I believe. I thought. I need. I want.
Gilded cages of propriety be damned, say what you mean and say it with confidence.
While we’re on this topic another word we should eliminate from our vocabulary is infertility. To say you’re infertile is to suggest your body is not capable of pregnancy. Beliefs are thoughts on repeat that become actionable and creates emotional inflammation in your body. This is actually a real thing; science is proving this: Google it. Everyone is fertile unless they don’t have a uterus/ovaries but most reproductive ailments can be reversed or fixed. So we need to stop saying infertile. Using it suggests our bodies are broken. This is simply not true. Our bodies respond to the words and thoughts we think: when we change how we think by changing our words, we can change our world and then those babies come Earthside.
Forget that word. Should is saying there was something we needed to do because of the influence of someone/society/internal programming wanting us to do that thing. Should you clean your room? Sure, but do you need to? Do you want to? If you don’t want to do it because you’d rather to go for a swim, do it. Shoulds can wait. Shoulds are the direct influence of something external that has created a guilt in you. Enough of that! Be responsible of course, but also ask yourself why should you do this thing? Feel how the answer sits in your gut. Act accordingly.
7. Good Vibes Only.
Hell no. Good vibes only? Positive vibes only? Damn, nah. All feelings are expected AND accepted. We aren’t robots. We can’t be happy-go-lucky rays of sunshine everyday. We’re human with a robust circle of emotions. We are allowed to feel sad or hurt or angry. We’re allowed to feel the yucky things. All vibes are needed to better ourselves. If you never felt pain, you wouldn’t truly appreciate peace. If you never felt anger, you’d never know true happiness.
There’s a ying and yang to everything in life and you can’t have one without the other.
Instead, suggest to your friends/family to work through their bad vibes so they can get back to living more frequently in the good vibes head space. Bad vibes suck but they’re needed. Allow all vibes into your world, just don’t let them unpack in your guest room.
I hope this blog wasn’t too preachy but lately I’ve been hearing so many women use diminutive language. ‘Should’s” and “justs” and “sorry” are rampant among us and it’s time to start living bigger; to say exactly what we want and mean and without the insecurity of judgement or ridicule. Own your words. They’re magical. They’re powerful. They can change your life. What life do you want? A caged life of being small or a big life of freedom, joy and confidence? I’ll take the latter please. How ‘bout you?