Mental & Emotional Corner: Positive Words Can Change Your Life

“a single word has the power to influence the expression of genes that regulate physical and emotional stress.” – from the book “Words Can Change Your Brain”

“Hi, good morning! Have a nice day.”

Do you know how powerful this one sentence? This one sentence from the right person could significantly impact your day in a positive manner.

“Mind your own business.”

Another could hurt you to the core and makes your day becomes worse than you’ve already predicted. That’s why people ask you to mind your words. The right words can make someone happy and other words could make them feel worse even if it’s coming from the same person. Why do words even matter?

a single word has the power to influence the expression of genes that regulate physical and emotional stress.” An excerpt from the book “Words Can Change Your Brain” written by Dr. Andrew Newberg, a neuroscientist at Thomas Jefferson University, and Mark Robert Waldman, a communications expert. Positive words like love and peace can increase cognitive reasoning and strengthening areas in our frontal lobes. Beside that, it could also activate motivational centers on our brain.

“By holding a positive and optimistic [word] in your mind, you stimulate frontal lobe activity. This area includes specific language centers that connect directly to the motor cortex responsible for moving you into action. And as our research has shown, the longer you concentrate on positive words, the more you begin to affect other areas of the brain. Functions in the parietal lobe start to change, which changes your perception of yourself and the people you interact with. A positive view of yourself will bias you toward seeing the good in others, whereas a negative self-image will include you toward suspicion and doubt. Over time the structure of your thalamus will also change in response to your conscious words, thoughts, and feelings, and we believe that the thalamic changes affect the way in which you perceive reality.”  
– an excerpt from “Words Can Change Your Brain”

They tested a large group of adults aged between 35-54 with the gratitude and appreciation journal. They were asked to write three things that went well at that day on the journal. Their degrees of happiness went up although they stopped writing. They only focused on using the positive words more on their life.

On the other hand, using negative or angry words or even curses will make the brain stop producing certain neurochemicals that contributed to stress management. Besides, it will also increase the activity of brain’s fear center (amygdala) and cause stress-producing hormones spread through our systems. Nobody wants that, right?

By focusing on positive language, thoughts, feelings, and emotion, we could improve our well-being and increase the functionality of our brain. The thing is this won’t impact only the speaker but also the listener. So, it would be a double-edged sword. Beware of what you say for everybody’s sake. If you feel like there is no happiness in your life, you can carry a journal with you and write three things that made you happy today. Hopefully, it will help you in managing your stress.


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