Your Best Asset
Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless. --Mother Teresa
Six reasons why kind, encouraging words are your best asset:
1. The power to speak healing words is available to you at all times, in all places, under all circumstances. Healing words are lighter than a laptop, more portable than a credit card. They can never be lost, stolen, or left at home.
2. Healing words cost you nothing. No matter how financially strapped you are, you can give lavishly with encouraging words.
3. Speaking kind words is a win-win situation. Both the speaker and the one spoken to walk away feeling great.
4. Healing words can calm better than a tranquilizer, with no adverse side effects. However, they are habit forming (thank goodness!)
5. Encouraging words are a non-depletable resource. No matter how many you use, you always have an unlimited supply.
6. Encouraging words yield high returns. You spend a small amount of energy and time, and the effect on the person spoken to can last for years or even change a life.
The following letter from a WCH subscriber powerfully illustrates the above points:
My family has been going through hard times recently. I have been mildly depressed since my mother died five months ago. Last week my husband was laid off from his job. My fourteen-year-old daughter is being shunned by her best friend, for no reason she can fathom. And my nine-year-old son is feeling the effect of everyone elses sad mood.
After reading your last WCH newsletter, which said that if you want to feel significant, do something significant, I decided to put your idea into action. Our family decided to go visit patients in the hospital, and to hand out cookies and drinks to them.
After dinner last Thursday, which was an unseasonably hot day, we walked to a local hospital, went up to the Orthopedic Department, and, painting smiles on our faces, set about cheering up the patients.
When we entered the last ward, we saw a young woman lying in one of the beds. Her face was badly burned and both her arms and one leg were in casts. Two visitors, apparently her parents, sat beside her.
We summoned up smiles and tried to greet her warmly. The woman, whose name was Esther, broke into a wide smile. "How wonderful that youve come to visit!" she exclaimed. "Youre making me so happy by your visit!"
"We are?" I thought.
It turned out that Esther had been in an automobile accident just that day. A driver had run a stop sign and plowed right into her car. She was more seriously hurt than he was, because somehow her engine had caught fire.
"And you came all this way with your children!" Esther effused, changing the subject from her to us. "How long did it take you to get here?"
"Twenty-five minutes," I answered simply, wishing we were the heroes she apparently thought we were.
"You walked twenty-five minutes in this heat just to visit patients in the hospital! You dont know how happy youre making me!"
"Well," I thought, looking at our baskets of drinks and cookies, "Maybe we are making a difference." My heart, which had felt like a wilted plant, started to come back to life.
"What are your names?" Esther asked my two children. When they answered her, she continued to ask: their ages, which schools they go to, which high school my daughter will go to next year. When my daughter answered with the name of a distant school which Im sure Esther had never heard of, she enthused, "Thats an excellent school!" I could see from my childrens faces that the more Esther focused her attention on them, the more they felt important and proud of their good deed.
We offered Esther cookies and drinks. All she would take was a cup of spring water, which my daughter had to hold for her, because of her injured and burnt hands. Esther said that it was a miracle that she was alive. Then she quickly, effortlessly, turned the conversation back to our family, as if we the visitors were much more important than she the suffering patient. She kept reiterating how much our visit meant to her, how much it made her happy.
We all walked out of Esthers room feeling better than we had in ages. We felt good about ourselveswe had done something important and ontributive; we had made a real difference. Our depression metamorphosed into a quiet joy.
Only an hour later did it hit me: Every word that came out of Esthers mouth had been intended to make us feel good. This 24-year-old woman who had just been injured in a serious accident had healed us with her words. Clearly, the use of words to encourage and uplift was a skill Esther had mastered throughout her young life. Lying there in her hospital bed six hours after a catastrophic crash, wounded in her face, arms, and leg, Esther had nothing to give us but her words. Yet her words were more valuable than any gift imaginable.
Ive read your Words Can Heal handbook, and I regularly read your newsletter. But I never really understood the power of words to heal until I saw Esther in action.
Source: Brought to you by www.verticalresponse.com Visit www.WordsCanHeal.org for more ideas on how to heal with words. And spread the word! Send this message out today -- together we can make a difference!
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