Friday, October 31, 2008

Better Vocabulary, Better Experience

The power of words has long been recognized by the ruling classes; that's why censors have existed on and off for centuries. That's why books are sometimes burned, or prohibited. Words are tools we use to co-create reality.

That's also why Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez changed the names of so many national institutions and even the name of his country; he's trying to create a new national existence. But, while changing vocabulary is helpful to effect change, it's usually not enough in itself to say "I'm a now millionaire" and then lie in bed waiting for that new reality to manifest itself. On the other hand, telling everyone all the time how broke you are is probably not helpful for creating wealth. your own life, my life, you and I have the option of choosing more appropriate words to describe what we perceive. For example, today we're having unseasonably cold weather, but I'm thinking of it as fresh and invigorating cold weather. The temperature is the same regardless, and given my druthers, I'd rather be where it's warmer. However, I don't want my preference for warmth make my whole fall and winter experience more painful than it needs to be. Furthermore, I have learned that cold weather is good for agriculture.

So here are 8 word substitutions Mixonian suggests for you to consider:

Instead of problems, think opportunities.

Instead of jerks, think teachers.

Instead of pain, think signal.

Instead of obstacle, think challenge.

Instead of I need, think I would appreciate.

Instead of I'm struggling, think I'm on an interesting journey.

Instead of I have to, think I get to, or even I want to.

Instead of My adviser is ruining my life, think I realize I'm contributing somehow to this situation.

You can make your own list to suit your particular situation(s). Remember that today is going to be a fantastic day.