The Life-Changing Reason To Choose Your Words Carefully

Why words can actually hurt you.

woman in hat Valeria Ushakova / The Valeria Ushakova Collection via Canva

We have all heard the quote, "Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me." But what if I told you that was a lie?

Neuroscientist Nas Neuro says that negative talk can negatively impact our brains. So, how can we keep our brains safe? And why should we watch out for negative talk in the first place?

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Why do we need to choose our words carefully?

When we speak negatively it can impact our brains. According to Neuro, “Parts of your brain that control language are also involved in regulating your heart rate, hormones, immune system, and breathing."

Professor of Psychology George Kohlrieser cites a study that focused on perception. He writes that when we look at the external world in a non-defensive light our heart rate slows down and moves our blood circulation in a positive direction.

"Words can impact our genes leading to changes in our physical and emotional stress," writes Kohlrieser. And as we think positively, we promote better cognitive functioning.


However, what happens when we begin to think negatively? Thinking negatively can have the opposite effect, leading to higher stress and worse concentration. This is because activity increases in the amygdala leading to these negative symptoms.

When we focus on our positive thoughts we can both change our perception about ourselves and decrease anxiety.

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What can you do to change your mindset?

What can we do to change our mindset? According to Mayo Clinic changing your mindset begins with your environment. When we surround ourselves with toxicity we begin to adopt a similar mindset.


According to clinical specialist in child and adolescent counseling Stephanie A. Sarkis, “Constant criticism and belittlement can erode self-confidence, making you feel worthless, anxious, and depressed.”

However, people aren't the only thing you need to get rid of. According to the American Psychological Association, having a messy environment can also lead to mental health issues like anxiety and depression.

So, if you want to adopt a positive mindset you must first change your surroundings.

Next, you need to check in with yourself throughout the day. How are you feeling? How was your day? What negative experiences can you turn into positive ones?


Asking these questions will force you to think more positively. Going along with this you also want to practice daily positive self-talk.

Positive self-talk is essential to keeping a positive mindset. If you struggle with this Mayo Clinic tells us, “Don’t say anything to yourself that you wouldn’t say to anyone else.”

Treat yourself with kindness and respect. According to the Mental Health Foundation, “Those of us who are kind and compassionate experience clear benefits to our well-being and happiness. We may even live longer.”

Other suggestions include:

  • Practicing gratitude
  • Focusing on your strengths
  • Look to see if your needs are being met.
  • Practicing radical self-care
  • Setting meaningful long-term goals
  • Focusing on growth instead of success.



By adopting a positive mindset, we can positively influence our brain's health.


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Marielisa Reyes is a writer with a bachelor's degree in psychology who covers self-help, relationships, career, and family topics.