Words = Language = Communication

Do the words you use and how you say them help you or hinder you?Have you ever stopped to think about how the words you use affect how you function in your everyday life? That sometimes simple, little words can profoundly affect you and the people you talk to, especially when you overuse them?

One of the biggest, little words we use is, try.

This one word, TRY, often leads to nothing because it implies failure from the very beginning.

Have you ever heard the expression trying is lying? I’m not referring to lying in the sense of deliberate deception, manipulation, or in a hurtful manner. I am suggesting that when people tell themselves and others “I’ll try” or “I’m trying,” what it really is, is an innocent self-deception.

Has anyone ever said to you that they would try to call, and then actually called you? Has anyone who said “I’ll try to be there” (at your party or other event) actually shown up? If you’re honest the answer is, very seldom.

Wise old Yoda, from the Star Wars movie, said “there is only doing or not doing, there is no trying.” Often we hear family, friends, and acquaintances say say things like “I’m trying to lose weight,” or “I’m trying to kick a bad habit,” or “I’m trying to make more money,” but do they actually do it? Only a few might and the vast majority don’t.

So what is the solution, cure, or antidote? The first step is to simply hear ourselves say that evil little word (try). Once we become consciously aware of saying it, we’ll then start catching ourselves saying it. Once we start catching ourselves, we will alter our thought process and then will really start doing more.

Instead of trying to clean or tidy up, we become more likely to actually do it. Don’t try this, just do it! In his book The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, Deepak Chopra explains the Law of Least Effort by remarking that “fish don’t try to swim, they just swim, birds don’t try to fly, they just fly (THEY JUST DO IT!).

Another culprit from the world of words is the dreaded should. We often innocently say we should do this or that (lose weight, exercise more, eat less sugar, study more, make more money, save more money, the list could go on and on). The effect of using the word should is to prolong our own avoidance of the very thing we probably need to do. It is procrastination in it’s shortest form.

The good news is there is an antidote. Like try, the first step is to hear ourselves saying it (should), and then start replacing it with the word need. When we tell ourselves we need (add in the lose weight, exercise, etc.) to do something, we are more likely to actually do it. Need is simply a more positive, powerful word. Need also implies or imparts a sense of some urgency to the activity that would benefit us, and we become more likely to do it.

Yet another sinister word in our vocabulary is the contraction of can and not: can’t. When we tell ourselves we can’t do something we really enable (or make stronger) our inability to do something. The way this contraction works against us is that the first part of the contraction (can) is in effect the enabler to NOT do something. The way our brains process this and other negatives is like we say to ourselves “I am able to NOT do this.” This makes going from can’t to will, (do this), very difficult, if not impossible. And, you’ll be happy to hear that there is a solution.

As always the first step is to hear ourselves (consciously) saying can’t. The second step is to replace the word can’t with the contraction won’t. Won’t is a contraction of the words will and not. When we use the word won’t (instead of can’t) we increase the likelihood that we will do something we formally could not do. The idea is that it is more possible to go from won’t to will, than it is to go from can’t to will.

You may have noticed a theme to this article, it’s that the first step is always to consciously hear what we are saying. This is how effective Hypnotherapy works: the Hypnotherapist brings into conscious awareness what is motivating our behaviour from a subconscious level. Once those motivators are exposed on a conscious level, we have a much better chance of changing something that will improve the quality and value of our life experience.

Also this works on the impact of your language with other people and as such will have an enormously positive effect on your ability to motivate, influence and persuade others regardless of environment.

So, have a think about these kinds of words that you use, think about what you can replace them with and how you can rephrase the sentence and get practicing catching yourself saying them.

The first step is the hardest and then once you begin to catch yourself it just gets easier and easier until it is second nature.

Have fun.


Published by

Simon Maryan

Former Royal Marine and Human Intelligence Specialist. Now an international speaker, author, trainer and coach sharing lessons from a life of action and how to prepare for and overcome trauma and other stressful situations. I've survived 3 kidnapping & all my experience enabled me to develop extremely strong psychological and mental resilience which I share with people through my speaking engagements delivering a variety of Keynote, motivational and inspirational talks for a wide variety of clients internationally. Some of these include UK Military, FBI, New York Police Department, NYPD Hostage Negotiation Team (the home of Hostage Negotiation), oil and gas companies, banks and UK Government departments.

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