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The Power of Words

“Throughout human history, our greatest leaders and thinkers have used the power of words to transform our emotions, to enlist us in their causes, and to shape the course of destiny. Words can not only create emotions, they create actions. And from our actions flow the results of our lives.” Tony Robbins

Teachers have the Power to Change Lives

When I was in 8th grade I played football. I had a coach that liked to motivate with negativity.  He would say things like, “Don’t be a wuss!” and once, I had a coach tell me that if I didn’t hustle, that I wouldn’t play football for him or anyone else. That kind of negative motivation works for some people, but I’ve never really been one who is motivated by shame or negativity. Instead of responding by working harder, as I saw some of my teammates do, I responded by barely doing enough to get by. Contrast that with a teacher who gave me a little bit of praise and I would conquer the world for them.

Below is a Ted Talk with Taylor Bertolini and she gives an 8 minute speech on how words have impacted her life.

When you harness the power of a kind word, you have the power to change lives. Taylor Bertolini is an NSU Junior pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science and a minor in Public Health with a certificate in leadership. Taylor has founded and become the fearless leader of Campus Cursive at NSU. Campus Cursive is an affiliate of More Love Letters, a global organization using the power behind social media to write and mail letters to strangers in need all around the world.”

Unintended Negative Messages

A friend of mine and I were having a conversation recently about a teacher who shamed him in from of the whole class. He said that he had been called on to read and that the teacher basically told him in front of the class that he couldn’t read well. That was in 5th grade and now, even in his thirties, he believes he isn’t a good reader despite being very successful. He even commented on the fact that anytime he is asked to get in front of others to read, that he breaks out in a nervous sweat for fear that he will stumble over his words.

We don’t often know how what we say will impact someone for the rest of their lives. Sometimes it is a 10 second interaction, sometimes it is a message that is repeated over and over, but what we say is powerful.

According to an article in Psychology Today: “Words create reality. The inner-dialogue you attach to any given situation makes it a reality in your mind. The subjective nature of reality can create problems and lead to failure if you are someone who is inclined to be negative.”

So what if we make a concerted effort to speak positivity in our lives and in the lives of others. Marie Kondo, famous for the Konmari Method, has created a system of organization that is built around whether or not things “Spark Joy”. If an item in your house doesn’t spark joy, then you get rid of it. What if we did the same thing with our words?

“Positive language helps to create a self-fulfilling prophecy at a neurobiological level.” (Psychology Today) While this information isn’t necessarily new, I think it is a good reminder especially in a world where we are bombarded by news that is often flooded with negativity and fear. When we watch that information, it impacts us, some more than others, but science supports the fact that words play an important role on the outcome of our lives: “…researchers conclude that people with positive dispositional attitudes are more open than people with generally negative dispositional attitudes. In day-to-day practice, this means that people with positive dispositional attitudes follow positive actions.” (Psychology Today)

Become a Teacher. Change Lives.

If you are passionate about impacting the world around you there are few places where you can influence the future as much as a teacher. Teachers have the ability to build students up and set them on a positive course that can have a ripple effect for future generations.

If you are interested in becoming a teacher, check out our online teacher certification process and you could be teaching in a matter of weeks.

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