By Inger Furholt
Words can make someone smile, giggle, laugh, cry and so much more. Words can build someone up, or tear someone down.
I was watching the video music awards Sunday night. Taylor Swift won her first award, the award for the female with the best music video. She went up on stage and started her acceptance speech. In the middle of it Kanye West walked over to her, took the microphone and said that Beyonce had the best music video, and should have won. Young Swift looked confused, and she was led off the stage without finishing her speech. Later Beyonce gave up her moment in the spotlight to let Swift finish the speech she was already giving before she was interrupted.
This little scene made me think about words, and the fact that once something is said it can’t be taken back, you can always apologize, but once the words are thrown out they’ve most likely been heard.
From when I was little, I’ve learned that words are powerful. What is said to someone can actually affect their life. Some people actually base their lives on what others have told them. As said, it is so easy to build someone up with words, but it is also so easy to tear someone down. In many situations there are empty words being thrown out, and in those cases we like to stick to the words even though people’s actions speak for themselves.
I used to wonder why girls would stick to the same boy for a long time, even when they didn’t treat them well. I had girls telling me that what the guy said to them. The words they used just made them feel like they were loved. From own experiences, I’ve noticed that it is easy to be walked over, because the words have been there to cover for it, but then again I’ve been sitting there in the end wondering why I would listen to the words and looking past the actions. They are both in the same category in the communication circle, and even though words are powerful they should go hand in hand with actions.
As I looked a little further into words, I came over many campaigns, and one of them especially caught my eye. “Words can heal” said the headline. This is a national campaign to prevent verbal violence. Some think that violence only comes in one form, and forget about the fact that verbal abuse is one of the biggest problems for children, youths and adults.
Words told to youths and children are especially life forming. There are many people struggling with what they were told when they were children or youths. What they were told by their parents, their classmates, their teachers, and their friends, for them the words are life forming.
Often we speak without thinking first, I know I do, especially when I am frustrated, annoyed or angry with someone else. Words come out of my mouth before I think about what I was actually going to say. Many times words have came out of my mouth before I’ve even formed the whole sentence in my head, and the words I say can often be hurtful, or just incredibly dumb. I’ll go over what I said many times, wondering why I would actually say something like I did, knowing that I can’t take it back.
Nobody likes being talked about, yet nobody has a problem talking about others. Using words wisely is always important. People will use what you say to base their opinion about you as well, so present yourself in a good manner and use good words, to build up yourself and others.
When going through life one will be told that you aren’t always good enough. You’ll hear words you don’t want to hear. There will always be people that will not like you, or maybe just not like your opinion. Words will always be said to you, or about you, and even though they are spoken, doesn’t mean they’re true.
Try to separate the real words from the fake ones, chose to lift someone up instead of tearing them down. Once something is said it cannot be taken back, and you’ll never know how your words will affect someone in the future.
Inger Marie Furholt is a junior majoring in journalism. You may e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.