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Ann Farabee: Watch your mouth

How do we do that? Yes, how do we watch our mouth? That would involve seeing our mouth with our eyes. Tricky.

Here are a few more ‘word’ quotes:

*You may have to eat those words. Have you ever had to eat your words? I have. Not very tasty, to say the least.

*If you can’t say something nice about someone, don’t say anything at all. If you walk into a roomful of people and no one is talking, that may be what is going on in there….

*Don’t let your mouth work faster than your mind. Hmmm…. that may take practice.

*Everyone is wise until he speaks. There is definitely some truth in that.

*The difference between an ‘almost’ right word and the right word is like the difference between a lightning bug and lightning. Choose words very carefully.

*A tongue has no bones, but it is strong enough to break a heart. No bones, but 8 muscles that work overtime.

*Among my most prized possessions are words I have never spoken. I find it hard to ‘hold’ my tongue, but am proud of myself when I do.

*Teach your tongue to say, “I don’t know.” I should use this advice more often.

*Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me. I beg to differ. Words do hurt. So, let’s just throw out this adage that is now 154 years old. Oh, wait a minute! I really should not have made a negative remark about a famous and very old quote. I take those words back.

There are around 6,900 languages. The largest dictionary has over 400,000 words. We speak somewhere between 7,000-20,000 words a day. The article I read with this information stated that this was discovered while trying to prove that women talk more than men. If that is true, perhaps men need to listen the first time, so we won’t have to keep repeating ourselves. Sorry. I take those words back, too.

Did I just waste a good newspaper column space on some unimportant words? I don’t think so.The Bible makes 100+ references to the power of words and the tongue, so it is an important topic. Some personal favorites: Ephesians 4:32 – Be kind to one another. Colossians 4:6 – Let your speech be always with grace. Proverbs 16:24 – Pleasant words are as a honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.

We all need to be reminded: Our. Words. Have. Power.          

I am sorry. I love you. I believe in you. I forgive you. Will you forgive me? You can do it. May I help you? You are right. I trust you. How was your day? I am so proud of you. I can tell you worked hard on that.You are really special. I was wrong. You did a great job. Do not worry about it. Thank you. Let me do that for you.

Just a sampling, but you get the idea. Words calm. Words challenge. Words comfort. Words connect. Words cheer. Words confirm. Words. Change. Us. Choose. Them. Carefully.

Maya Angelou, a poet who is well known for her autobiographical writings, beautifully stated: “Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.” There are a lot of people with clouds hovering over them – and no rainbow in sight. Let’s grab our dictionaries (dictionary.com will suffice) and start finding encouraging and positive words to empower others to see that rainbow!

Ready? Go for it!

Oh, one more thing: I love you… thank you for reading my column.

(Let me know how ‘watching your mouth’ goes… at annfarabee@gmail.com )


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