The pen really is mightier than the sword. Words have awesome power. They can be used to cut and wound, or to build. The trouble is that all too often, people speak without thinking, and in doing so, their words can have far-reaching consequences that can cause rifts and create all manner of trouble. Hurt feelings are just the beginning.

What this comes down to is the notion of mindfulness. Knowing the power of words, the best thing you can do is pause and consider your words before you speak them. Think not only about what you want to say, but the potential impacts on those you’ll be speaking to.

It doesn’t have to be a long pause, but especially in cases where emotions are running high, it pays to consider your words carefully. If you don’t, you could wind up saying something in anger or haste that will come back to bite you later on.

In addition to mindfulness, there’s another important thing to consider: choice.

You can choose to say the things that will build up and fortify those around you, or you can choose to tear them down and burn bridges. Sadly, some people choose exactly that course of action. It’s possible that you work with someone like that, and if so, you know how damaging it can be.
That’s the kind of thing that can turn a healthy, productive work environment into a highly toxic one, and that isn’t good for anyone.

At the end of the day, then, it comes down to what sort of person you want to be, and what kind of environment you want to create.
You can, simply by the power of your words, choose to create, or help build a highly supportive, productive environment for those around you. Or, you can use words to instill fear and anger and sow the seeds of doubt. All of this is dependent, in large part, on how you choose to speak.

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