Last week, I wrote about the power that habits can have when we apply them properly to our lives. It’s not really that surprising to think that most of our behaviors relate to habit, and so determine how one feels and acts almost always. They can be a source of true positivity or handicap us, so it’s down to everyone, individually, to think about their own habits and which might be suitable to change.
One particular habit that I’m personally working on, is the habit of using the language of success.
Whether we vocalize it or not, we talk to ourselves almost constantly. At work, while at home, talking with friends, walking about town, while cooking, while eating, while falling asleep, while playing music or reading books – except for those rare moments in which we’re at a loss, we’re usually talking to ourselves about something. What’s interesting is that we have a choice in terms of the type of language we speak to ourselves with, and using the right kinds of language can dramatically affect your day.
Certain words erode your self-power, your positivity and your motivation. Other words build those things up. Listening to which words you use when you’re talking to yourself says a lot about your under-lying attitude toward your life. Are you someone who feels like they are being dragged along? Are you living reluctantly? Do you want to change those feelings? Perhaps all it might take is a switch in the words you use. Here are a few to try:
- Change “have to” to “choose to.” You don’t have to get out of bed. You choose to get out of bed.
- Change “should” to “going to.” Instead of saying that you should cut down on how much you drink or eat, say you’re going to cut down on how much you drink or eat.
- Change “can’t” to “won’t.” It’s not that you cannot read before going to sleep tonight, it’s that you won’t.
- Change “must” to “get to.” Instead of saying that you must go to work tomorrow morning, say that you get to go to work tomorrow.
These are not monumental changes, but they do represent a monumental shift in the way one is viewing the world. The former in each case are examples of words that are passive, that imply loss of control, that reinforce the idea that you’re not the one in command, that you don’t have an ability to influence. The latter words do just the opposite; they imply that you’re the one in control, that you’re the one who’s driving the direction of your life, that you’re the one who is living in the moment and making the decisions that determine how your day will be.
Success, for me, is not material, or based on achievement. Success is in self-control, self-awareness, integrity and appreciation for the things I experience in my life. I don’t always succeed, but when I do, it’s often when my attitude reflects the language I’ve used above.
The words that you use are habitual. If you’re someone who is already using the language of success, whatever your definition of success may be, then you’re already on your way, you’re already taking responsibility for the quality of your experience on this planet. If you’re not, then maybe, just maybe, you might want to have a think about trying to change some of the words you use as you fly through your days.
“Whatever words we utter should be chosen with care for people will hear them and be influenced by them for good or ill.”