3 ways in which language influences us & undermines our competence

When we hear the words language and influence, we usually think of great speakers like Martin Luther King, Kevin Spacey or Tony Robins…. People who moved hearts, shifted mindsets and inspired millions of people to make a change. What we rarely realize though: the words we say to ourselves everyday – the inner voice – influences us even stronger and with a more lasting impact.

On average, we say 16.000 words per day (no significant difference between men and women, by the way). And that’s just a fraction of the vast amount of words that are living inside our heads.

The words we choose to say to ourselves and to others have two effects:

  1. The words we tell ourselves everyday influence our feelings, behavior and shape our personality
  2. By communicating with the outside world, we show our personality

You are what you tell yourself day in and day out

Language influences us from the very beginning of our lives. Our parents choose the language(s) we learn as a child. With our mother tongue, we inherit a huge catalog of cultural values and socially constructed norms. In addition, we let our experience and our feelings slip into our language – whether we want or not. Most of these things happen unconsciously – but it doesn’t mean we can’t change it!

The language we learn as a child even influences how we perceive the world. Example: In the Russian language, there are two distinct words for light blue and blue. Researchers could prove that native Russian speakers can distinguish the vast variety of blue shades more precisely than others.

The language as a therapist

Our language gives so much away about ourselves – and if we learn to listen and decode, we can understand ourselves better. Words are like a very skillful psychotherapist – they know your struggles and can direct you onto a better path.

Even though we may not be consciously focusing on our self-talk, our subconscious mind is listening to everything we say to ourselves!

The subconscious mind accepts all of our words as the truth without any filter! If you allow bad self-talk like “I’m a failure at xy” it equals junk-food that you ingest daily. Over a certain period of time you get sick!

These 3 tips will help you understand how your language impacts your life – and how others perceive you through it

Read the full article on my LinkedIn page: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/3-ways-which-language-influences-us-undermines-our-marina-zayats

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