Recently I've been constantly reminded of the power of the words that I use - in classes and in private sessions. Every few weeks a client comes up to me and says "Remember you told me in my session that...." Or in Forrest Yoga classes, where the theme and words I delivered during class heavily imprinted on a journalist's mind. A fellow yoga teacher even joked that in a class last week, he had a part of me in his brain - and in his best efforts tried to replicate and deliver the intended energy through his words.
Whilst it is indeed very humbling to receive the feedback, it has further heightened my awareness of the tremendous power of words and strengthened my resolve to carefully curate the words used.
On the flip side, clients tell me their stories about how one innocuous person 20, 30 or even 40 years ago made a remark that still sits in their body - causing not only psychological discomfort, but emotional wounds that reverberate through their cells, recalling them as though the incident happened yesterday. Nicknames that they were given as kids, which sounded cute to adults shoved them into a bubble of shame destined to be embedded in their psyche.
And so, I am blessed with great teachers who inspire my soul in this regard - Ana Forrest, who spots a student at a far corner of the room, walks to him/her to give an energetic assist while delivering a pointed one-liner like - "It's ok to ask for help" shooting the words right into one's heart. Hugh Milne - the master behind visionary craniosacral work recites poetry during one's somatic releases and makes you feel like the poem was written for you and only you.
The guidance I've received from them is aptly captured in the Sufi saying.
Before you speak, ask yourself
- Is it true ?
- Is it necessary ?
- Is it helpful ?
And to add to it, is it my ego speaking ?
Don Miguel Ruiz says it best in his book - The Four Agreements. The first agreement is - "Be Impeccable with your Word: Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the Word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your Word in the direction of truth and love."
As we (officially) move into the second half of the year, may we strive to be impeccable with our words, to be cautious yet not be afraid of unleashing words that flow from our hearts, allowing them do their magic, because