Don’t fight the power of words
by Lynnette Ramirez
It’s a new year and a new way of thinking. Or so many of us tell ourselves this in order to look forward to brighter days and greener pastures.
By March, often times these resolutions are abandoned or completely forgotten because while changes are always happening around us, changing and adapting oneself doesn’t ever come easy. So, I decided a long time ago I wasn’t going to make New Year’s resolutions because anytime I think of something I’d like to improve upon I want to address it immediately, in the present, knowing how long actual self evolution realistically takes. Hence this also allows me to escape the dread of facing the failure of having not achieved New Year’s resolutions come every December.
While I may not want to have to wait for a new calendar year to get my behind in gear, I also sometimes just don’t want to get my behind in gear at all. After a much-needed two-week holiday hiatus from the office I returned on the 6th refreshed but not necessarily changed. Yet I knew deep down my attitude, particularly at the office, was in need of a positivity overhaul.
It had been a building year in 2013 in my career and like with any type of construction, there were a lot of challenges. For the first time in my life I finally understood from a visceral place the meaning of “burnout.” The time away seemed to cure my burnout, but hadn’t inspired the overall fresh approach I was hoping for.
During the first week back at the office, I had a conversation with a co-worker and friend I have become particularly fond of. She looked exceptionally radiant to me on this January day and I let her know I thought so. This lead to a quick conversation where she explained to me she was focusing on the “power of words.” Emphasizing how important positive affirmations and self-talk can be for one’s attitude and overall success in life. I off-handedly agreed this focus was agreeing with her and must be the reason for her glow, as this is a general philosophy I subscribe to, or so I thought I did. Except as I walked away I made a breezy but not so positive comment, albeit totally joking, that I had to go find out if I was getting fired.
I realized in that moment, me saying that, meant our talk about positivity and the power of words was really lost on me these days. It got me thinking that I needed to not necessarily make a resolution, but focus right then in the present on my own words. It made complete sense being that I understand the power of words when someone else uses them toward me. When someone expresses their admiration or gratitude or love, I feel their words very deeply. Almost as much as when someone says something thoughtless, insulting or particularly hurtful. I definitely feel those words sting me right through the chest and down into my stomach, making it ache with sadness and upset.
If words spoken by others can have such a profound effect on us, then of course our own words even in jest, about and to ourselves, must affect our attitude and how others perceive us.
However, just like in the movies, characters, in this case me, on a journey don’t always fully listen the first time they hear knowledge and profound wisdom knocking.
For the next week I thought about my words and then I didn’t, off and on, struggling to be positive and generally by 4pm complaining to my coworkers about something or other, whether it be my own missteps or annoyance at other’s mistakes. Not very positive and full of powerful negative vocabulary.
Then week two rolled around and on an early Monday morning I was off to Vegas for a new boxing show I’m overseeing. It was there that I was convinced. I was surprised at the airport by not just my show driver, but one of our cast members, Floyd Mayweather, Sr. Most will know better than I that he is father and trainer to whom some will argue is the best fighter in the world today and may be ever. Floyd Mayweather, Jr. is undefeated. Within minutes of meeting Big Floyd, he started spouting off positive rhymes reminiscent of Muhammad Ali’s famous chants. He even did a rhyme featuring my name on the drive to set.
It was the second knocking I needed to remind me of the power of words. I bet he taught his son to speak loud positive self-affirmations that lead to him being a championship boxer. I would wager most champions in any field at the peak of their victory filled their own head and world around them with positive words that gave them power too.
I’m not so foolish to think words alone not accompanied by action, hard work, in the case of boxers, vigorous athletic training, are also necessary for success. Yet I can’t deny the reminder that when you use encouraging words during self-talk and focus on positive affirmations for yourself, the hard work, long hours, training and burden of leadership will become easier.
My positive thought at the moment: it’s not a bad day at the office to be reminded by a supportive co-worker or a championship trainer the power of your own words.Tags: Entertainment industry, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Floyd Mayweather Sr., Hollywood, Lynnette Ramirez, Positive words, Power of words, Television