Have you ever watched a silent movie? I recently “watched” a movie on a plane flight. I really did watch it…I chose not to pay for the movie so I was unable to hear the sound. The movie was 1,000 Words starring Eddie Murphy. In the movie Eddie’s character discovers he only has 1,000 words left to say before he dies. So this got my wheels turning and I have been thinking about it for weeks.
Have you given much thought to how many words you speak in one day?
One clinical study has concluded that women speak an average of 20,000 words per day and men speak an average of 7,000 words per day. Now before I head off on a rabbit trail let me just say that there are plenty of opinions about these findings. But let’s just go with it for the sake of this post.
No matter how you look at it, that’s a lot of talking…This has me wondering… Are all of my conversations necessary or are they idle chatter? Are my words cruel and demeaning? Or are my words sweet and life affirming?
What if my words were limited? Not just my spoken words but my written words as well. Would I be so quick to speak? Would I waste my precious words on cursing or gossip? Would I choose my words more carefully? Speak more sweetly? Make the most of every syllable I utter.
How creative would I become in order to conserve my precious allotment. How many non verbal ways are there to communicate with people in my life.? A smile or laughter is universal and conveys joy and happiness. A hug can express more sympathy or empathy than any number of words and I have found on many occasions it’s all that’s necessary. A thumbs up will let someone know that they are doing a good job. A wave says hello or goodbye.
I know my words carry a lot of weight…My words can build up a life or tear it down! I have a choice before I ever open my mouth…I can choose tasteless bitter words that cause hurt that cuts to the bone… or I can choose words that are tasteful, full of sweetness, wholesome and kind. Words that will enrich the life of the person on the receiving end. My words should breathe life and offer hope. The words I speak should drip of honey and bless the ears that hear them.
Now with all that said, I don’t always think the most positive things but I do try to check what comes out of my mouth before its too late. Words are one thing you can never take back no matter how hard you try…apologize you may but the words will always be there lurking in the memory of the person who was on the recieiving end. Every time I get behind the wheel of my car I encounter someone who challenges my positive thought process. When I have to wait on hold for an unmerciful amount of time only to be transferred multiple times or have my call disconnected leaves me fuming and mumbling under my breath. When my favorite sports team systematically implodes I find myself screaming at the television giving the coach a much-needed talking to. And more times than not I find myself speaking negative, less than re-affirming thoughts into my own life when I am tired and frustrated or feeling a little bit sorry for myself.
Back to the “silent movie”…Eddie’s character became very creative with non-verbal communication…especially as he came closer and closer to the end of his life. Not one of us knows the day or time that we will breathe our last breath…isn’t that reason enough to be more cognizant of the words we speak. What kind of legacy will your words say about you? With that in mind, I am much more thoughtful about all the yada yada yada in my life…how about you?