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Nothing can affect your mental state like the things you tell yourself. Most of the time the things we say to ourselves are untrue and only serve to make things worse. If we are to be happy, confident people we must be kind to ourselves, not only physically, but mentally as well. Therefore, here are 5 words you should ban from your vocabulary and what you should replace them with.
Words You Should Ban and Replace
Replace Can’t with Can
One of the worst words you can use on yourself over and over again, and one of the most important words you should ban, is “can’t”. The word “can’t” limits you. It stops you before you begin. There is nothing you can’t do when it comes to your dreams or things you wish to try. Telling yourself you can’t do something causes your brain to accept it as truth so you never even try. Trying once and then telling yourself you can’t prevents you from trying again. Will you be great at everything? No. But it is worth trying something several times before you decide it is not for you. When you want to try something new, start telling yourself you CAN do it. Add “can” to your daily affirmations. If you aren’t doing daily affirmations, they are worth adding to your mornings.
Replace Stupid with Smart
This is a huge one for me. Especially when it comes to children. So many kids grow up believing they aren’t smart enough and they give up trying. Then they become adults who have no ambition or drive because they aren’t smart enough to succeed. Stupid should never be in your vocabulary. We all struggle with different concepts. No one is an expert in every subject. You should always refer to yourself as smart and/or capable. We are all capable of learning new things no matter how difficult they seem. Also remember that if there are subjects you can’t quite grasp, there is nothing to be ashamed of. Each person has a mind that works differently from others. Some of us get math easily, some of us get language or poetry easily. Always try to learn other subjects but don’t count yourself down when your gifts lie in another area.
Replace Ugly/Fat with Unique/Enough
Never, ever call yourself ugly/fat or put up with anyone who says such things to you. These are words you should ban completely. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and, believe me, there are some unconventionally beautiful, unique, and interesting people out there that are extremely attractive because of their talents and/or confidence. For example, I am not a skinny person. I am quite curvy and there are days I am down about it and I am working on it. However, I am very careful not to make it worse by telling myself I am unworthy, ugly, or fat. I learned a long time ago, in an acting class, to repeat the phrase “I am enough” on a daily basis and it changed my outlook considerably. One day, I was walking into the grocery store and a woman stopped me and told me I was walking with so much confidence and cheeriness that she thought I was one of the prettiest people she had ever seen. I reminded her of Ashley Graham. If you don’t know who she is, she is a well-known plus-size supermodel. Gorgeous. It was so very flattering. Confidence always wins over conventional prettiness. It is far more attractive to own your unique features and the body God gave you then to be another generic pretty girl.
Replace Bad with Good
Going along with “can’t” and “stupid” is the word “bad”. “I’m a bad mother.” “I’m bad at public speaking.” “I’m bad at math.” You are NOT bad at these things. You just haven’t learned them well yet or you are feeling down due to some setback. Being bad at something just means you need to reevaluate and practice more. Further, telling yourself you are bad at something eventually makes you believe it and that it will never change. Tell yourself you are good. A good mother, a good public speaker, good at math. While it may not be completely true, it will change your perspective and enable you to get better at those things.
Replace Impossible with Possible
Finally, you should replace the word “impossible” with “possible”. Nothing is impossible. Things can feel that way but that doesn’t make it true. Some things take more effort than others or more time but that doesn’t mean they won’t happen. The world is full of stories of people accomplishing seemingly impossible things. Replacing this word with “possible” reframes your mindset to believe in your dreams and work harder towards them.
Language plays such an important role in our lives, not just for communication with others, but with ourselves as well. We should constantly strive to take the negative things we tell ourselves and turn them around. If we can’t speak to ourselves with kindness, how can we expect others to speak to us with kindness? Always remember that you are worth so much more than you may think you are. Treat yourself as such.