I always hear people talk about watching your words. I hear it from my spouse, pastor, friends, and relatives. I try to watch my words all the time, but especially around my children. I know we all have moments of weakness where we get angry and say something we shouldn’t. Maybe I am the only one and this blog is totally for myself and nobody else. Although those can be shocking and possibly detrimental for small ears to hear, those aren’t exactly the words I am talking about in this post. I am talking about those sentences and phrases that came out of my mouth first; possibly days ago, weeks, months, or even years ago.
I was shocked the first time I heard my oldest say the exact phrases I have used. Hearing them out of my little ones mouth sure makes it sound more negative than I ever thought it sounded out of my mouth. I have five sons between the ages of 12 and 1. All but my one year old have quoted me at different points of their lives. I wish I could say I was proud of myself when I heard them, but I wasn’t. Hearing your 5 year old yelling at his younger brother about how he is doing everything wrong with such adamant negativity has really made me try to change the way I speak. I try to speak in softer tones and try to be more positive when I speak. I try to correct without belittling them, or making them feel inadequate or dumb.
I can’t say I never yell now, or speak to my kids in the most positive way possible, but understanding that there are flaws with my words an the way I say them is a great first step. Our words are powerful, our tone of voice is powerful, and choosing to correct in a positive way can be powerful. I choose today to do just that; empower my kids to take the best from me, and not the worst.