I’ve been coaching and consulting professionals for over a decade. It’s a joy and a responsibility I greet with reverence and gratitude. What is said in these conversations is not scripted, but rather it is based on years of training, listening and commitment. People trust me with what I say and how I listen, and I take that very seriously. It is also great training for other important conversations, like the ones I have with my son, Gabriel.
Gabriel is 6 years old and loves to ask questions. A couple of recent favorites are, “Dad, what is a soul?” … and, “Which planet did God make first?”
I do my best to be earnest and thoughtful in my responses, but I must admit … I’m often caught pleasantly off-guard.
To add to the challenge is his strong will for certainty. Just like my clients, maybe’s and theoretical possibilities are not what he’s looking for. He wants answers! The most fun and most daunting part is what he hears from me will shape so much of his belief system. You parents out there have surely found yourself in these special moments.
In The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom (A Toltec Wisdom Book), Don Miguel Ruiz begins with “Be Impeccable with your Word” as the first agreement. He reminds us of the power and the sanctity of what we say. Our responsibility is not only for the other people we are talking to, but extends out to other worlds as well. Quantum physics tells us there is energy substance that helps manifest what’s around us. Everything is part of this energy, and our words are a part of that everything-ness. Therefore, our words really have a creative essence!
Perhaps most importantly is the first person who is hearing what we say. Ourselves. We know ourselves to be who we tell ourselves we are. This may be something we voice out loud or it may be unspoken and internalized.
It could be that this is where our word should be most impeccable. Just like it does with my son and with my clients, what I say shapes my own beliefs too and my own values and my own actions. It shapes who I am for myself.
What you say shapes who you are too.
At the level of identity our word creates literally who we are, even physically! Have you ever willed yourself to be well? … or sick?
What have you said about yourself lately?
Were you kind and forgiving? Or were you critical?
And what about sarcasm?
The whole idea of personal responsibility is gaining traction these days in the mainstream. It’s no longer just a self-improvement slogan. But where does it begin?
Maybe it begins with our word, silent or spoken. What are the words you speak everyday? Is it consistent with the world you want?
If you want to change your life and your world, try changing what you say.
Written by Brett Morris