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The High Deserts Social Network Blog…

THE LANGUAGE OF HEALTHY AGERS

Language can be a powerful weapon or a healing wand. In the extreme, our words can make people embrace us or kill us. On a daily basis,  how we speak and how we are spoken to influences our health and our motivation, which directly impacts how well we age.

Have you ever spent time around someone who is a naysayer, swears incessantly, has poor grammar and/or talks negatively about others all day? How do you physically feel afterwards? For me, I find myself drained, irritable, and sometimes, I even start treating others the same way. Just like a virus, language can be contagious.

In contrast, if you’ve ever spent time around someone who is upbeat, supportive of others and self-empowered, you notice how differently they use language and how much better you feel about yourself and them by the time you leave. Naturally, it goes without saying that spending time around people who speak positively can foster better health for both the speaker and the people they touch.

There are a number of articles on the internet that address how vocabulary can foster positive energy and good health.  One life change site offers examples to help reprogram anyone’s normal catch phrases with Positive Language. Two other sites discuss how Using Positive Language can Help Customers Think Positively, a definite advantage in business. Another site goes so far as to identify THE Top 25 Positive Words and Phrases.

Not only will speaking at a higher level help you in business, it will also make you FEEL more positive. It’s kind of like an actor who uses dialogue, physical expressions and actions to internalize the mental state of the character she’s trying to channel. Sometimes it’s easier to make the change from the outside in.

Try this as an experiment. When you’re feeling negative for whatever reason (come on, we all have those moments), force yourself to say something nice to someone—compliment the cashier or simply smile and say good afternoon to the next passerby who makes eye contact. I know, I know, it’s hard to do when you’d rather just spit at them, but as untruthful as it feels, you may be surprised how the positive response you receive back actually helps you feel better so that you begin to feel and speak positively naturally.

Language is easier to change than our beliefs and yet good language habits can help honestly modify our beliefs. Why? When externally we use positive, proactive, empowering words, people perceive us in a more positive light, and we attract more positive people and opportunities for success into our lives. Guess what? That makes us ACTUALLY feel better about ourselves and others.

The positively old live longer and happier because they tend to use positive language. People gravitate toward them, so they’re still surrounded by friends, family and wonderful opportunities long after their complaining peers have resorted to staring at the television screen between long, lonely intervals without visitors.

The one thing that I have noticed with older people I admire the most is how gentle they’ve become about criticizing others and forgiving them. They’ve lived long enough to see that everyone makes mistakes, and they’ve learned that in the greater scheme of things, most of these missteps are too small to matter.

On that note, I’ll leave you with one parable about the results of speaking badly about others (this is particularly true in the age of the Internet). I hope it drives home the truth of how powerful and hurtful our words can be, and how important it is to choose them wisely as we strive to grow and improve.

Share with us a time when the way something was said saved the day for you or someone close to you.

 

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January 27, 2011 Posted by | baby boomer information, Healthy Aging, over 50, positive language, Successful Aging | , , , , | Leave a comment