Having gone through a few series specifically touching on how we should talk to one another respectfully, it is now also important to touch on the fact that the words of other people should not be allowed to limit our lives or redesign our system completely. There are too many people with a weak defense system who take in or let me say soak in every word from other people. They have not been able to define themselves without the definition or opinion of other people. If all you think of yourself is the cumulative opinion of other people then you don’t know who you are!
I remember being a young boy and talking to other people around me. I used to brag then that I could walk boldly into any place and say the things that I want to say. I was so confident and you could practically feel my courage to speak anywhere and about anything. At such points, some other people around did not understand my confidence and optimism. They would want to tell me how some of my dreams or words were merely dreams that are far fetched and cannot be achieved. There were times I got angry with them for being negative against my dream. Sometimes, I fought back with more positive words.
Although I did not understand what motivation was at the time, I did not know much about speaking right as well but I was to optimistic to be intimidated by the self-limiting opinions of others. Of all people, I was just not the person that you will limit with your words. I could get into a real fight for saying something negative against me. Something in me naturally gets angry when I hear negative words. It’s like allowing two wrong wires touch inside my head! If that was me as a young man, how can anyone’s opinion now limit my life right now that I am still young but more informed about the power of words?
You have to build up a defense mechanism that sifts the negative words from the right words. As the negative words are coming they bounce back. As the right words are coming you soak them in. You must remember that people have the freedom of speech and can say whatever they want to say. You are the one that will turn deaf ears to their myopic words. If you say you will do great things and someone begins to question that with negative words and trying to make you see circumstances, just leave that person. Look for a man or woman that believes and talk to that one. Let me also quickly remind you that when I say build defense mechanism, I am not saying you should not take constructive criticism! Constructive criticism will help you grow. It makes you better and that’s different from people trying to run you down.
When people say you are a fool, that word should bounce back! That’s because you know who you are. You know you are filled with God’s wisdom or godly wisdom. When a boss says you are not smart, it should not get to you. I once worked with someone who sometimes tried to intelligently insult subordinates but I rose above that. I was not in for petty trading of words or trying to prove that I am more than this person’s limited opinion of me. At some point, it looked like the person was trying to run me down because he was intimidated by certain things he saw.
Stay away from people who will always sound negative and in the case where you cannot stay away, never let those words get to you. As they give their limited and negative opinion in words, kill the power of those negative words by giving yourself positive affirmations on who you are and what you can do. If someone says ‘you’re not smart.’ Say to yourself, ‘I am more than smart. I am intelligent. Men will seek the wisdom in me. I carry solutions and make life easier for others.’ For every negative word you get, speak as many affirmative words that you can!
In all the words that you hear, your life is more likely to respond to the words that you speak to yourself and not the words that others are speaking to you. It is only when you say nothing to yourself that the words of others stand a strong chance of defining who you are. From today, define who you are with your own words and don’t let the words of others do it for you!
Fola Daniel Adelesi
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