Virginia Wolf once said, “Language is wine upon the lips.” I couldn’t agree more. As a writer, teacher and all-round right-sided-brainer, I’m a big fan of words.
But I also know that just as words can be wine, they can also be poison. The harshest words of all are the ones that no one else hears – the ones spoken silently to ourselves.
I watched a brilliant TED talk a while ago – absolutely full of gems – by Caroline Myss. It was called, ‘Choices that can Change your Life.’ Here, Caroline suggested that we pay close attention to the words that we use, and eliminate at least one that we no longer need.
For me, this would be should.
You should be at the gym now.
You should not have said that.
You should have said that.
You should be slimmer.
You should not be so tired.
You should not have eaten that.
You should own your own house.
You should have known better.
You should be better.
This word just isn’t useful to me. I use it to place unrealistic expectations on myself and beat myself up. It doesn’t motivate me – it just makes me feel bad.
So it’s going in the bin.
Do you have a word that needs eliminating this year? Which word would it be, and why? Perhaps you have a word that you’d like to take on? I’d love to hear your thoughts below: