Posted in after the diagnosis, coping with chronic illness, coping with life threatening illness, living with chronic illness, Living with Illness

The Power of Words

There’s a difference between listening and hearing.  Listening means that something registered in your brain that came through the ears.  Hearing means taking in the content and doing something with it.  In addition, we’re in a culture full of niceties, but often how we interact doesn’t register until it’s too late.  Ever pass someone in a hallway and they say, “how ya doin’?”  Most people, no matter how crappy a day their having say “Fine” and the other person keeps walking.   In most cases do you really believe it would be any different if you got asked “How ya doin'” and your reply was, “not so good”.  I’ve watched it happen and the other person says, “that’s good” and keeps walking.  I just wanted to make the distinction between listening and hearing.

I’m working with a gentleman who was diagnosed with cancer a while back and is having a difficult time.  He’s in a lot of pain, and his treatment options are quite limited, at this time.  I listen to him when he interacts with customers and I was surprised to hear him say to a customer, “Use it in good health”.  This is the first time I’m working with him so I don’t know if it’s something he’s always said, or if it’s something he’s added to his verbage since his diagnosis.

Where am I going with this?  Words have power.   The words coming out of your body connect your physical, emotional, and spiritual beings.  When you say to someone about a purchase, “Use it in good health”, I’m wondering if he himself is listening to it when he speaks.  Is he using the body he has to the best of its ability.  Is he taking care of himself so that the internal power he needs to reduce his stress and get enough rest really is in play? 

When you say something do you listen to yourself or do you hear yourself?  Are you able to really believe what you say because the body, mind, and spirit are going to try to react to those words.  It’s about keeping your words congruent with your actions and giving your whole self the power to move forward on your journey to health and/or healing.