Be Careful With The Words You Use

Be Careful With The Words You Use

They are much more powerful than we give them credit for.
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I sat in the parking lot as the rain poured over my car. In the safety of my blacked-out SUV, I sobbed. "This isn't like me at all," I thought "letting people's words affect me so much is ridiculous!" My mind replayed the entire scene back to me, the rude comment my director said to me in front of the entire class, the laughter he directed toward me around 20 minutes later, the face of the student next to me, though I couldn't tell if the student's reaction was towards me or how the director was acting.

Words are much more powerful than we give them credit for. Proverbs 16:4 "Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones. " Whether or not you agree with the Bible, there is undeniable evidence of this in real life.

One day I was having a conversation with some women about healthy eating. I explained that occasionally I will forget to eat lunch. With a dumbfounded look on her face, one of the women asked: “Well if that’s true, why aren’t you skinnier?” Her words bore a hole into my core as dark thoughts circled in my head. Thoughts of not being good enough, that the only ones who are worthy are those who are smaller than me. Past regrets came flooding back, memories of days spent not eating washed over me. Honestly, I do not think that the woman meant her comment in a vindictive way, but that’s how powerful her words were.

On another occasion, I was taking a difficult music class in which the professor was, for lack of better words, a hard-ass. He was strict on absences and homework. There were weekly quizzes and hardcore exams. After one of our quizzes, I distinctly remember him thanking myself and a fellow classmate for singing the piece with musicianship. I was shocked by the compliment because they were rare to come by. His words of encouragement have stuck with me to this day.

My absolutely favorite professor said something that I hope I never forget: "Invest deeply, hold loosely." I can’t tell you how many times I heard him say it, but I can tell you that it has been a great reminder for me in various situations. He wasn’t the most endearing professor, in fact, at one point he gave me all the tough love possible and questioned if I was able to deal with being a music major. His words pushed me towards better things and I am a better person because of what he said.

Words can either build up or demolish and while we do not have control over how others take what we say, it is important to be aware of the words we use. In every moment, my hope is to build others up, to encourage them to do better, to use the power of my words for good.

Cover Image Credit: Hai Phung

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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To The Best Friend Every Girl Should Be Blessed Enough To Have

You definitely deserve all the love.

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I have not written this letter, but it has been on my list of "to write" for forever. She keeps asking when I will write one about her and every time I tell her, soon.

Well here it is. The truth on why it took so long? No words seem to do everything justice. No matter how I put them or how I want them to sound, the page always makes them look weird and they always sound lame.

But finally, here it is. Best friend, this one is for you.

First and foremost I will start with a holy cow. We have been best friends for only a short time because who knew your "in school friend" from all those math classes would actually turn into this? We put off hanging out outside of school for years, and finally, after suffering through all that algebra we decided enough was enough.

I wish we had sooner.

I wish I had gotten more time with you before we both moved away to college - but ill take whatever time I get with you because well… you're incredible.

Thank you.

Thank you for finally agreeing to hang out with me.

Thank you for listening to every rant ever - whether it was a paragraph long text, a 2 hour FaceTime call or an hour-long car ride.

Thank you for ordering planners with me and spending nights decorating them with me (we are such losers).

Thank you for letting me become a part of your family.

Thank you for going to Friendly's, IHOP and Target at the most ungodly hours.

Thank you for encouraging me in everything I do, and stopping me from making bad decisions.

Thank you for telling me the truth, despite if it hurt me or not, I know now you will never lie about your feelings towards someone (LOL).

Basically, thank you for everything you have done for me. You have made me a better person and you encourage me to be my best self every single day.

Moving on I want to make it clear how incredibly proud of you I am. I love getting texts from you about your love for your classes, and how you want to be president of this club and president of that. How you help out kids, and how you host events. I love hearing about your major and the classes you are so incredibly excited to take. Watching you be so passionate about what you are doing and becoming makes me want to feel the same way in everything I do.

I hope someday my kids are your students because, in your hands, I know they can change the world.

Last but not least, I love you. And you're stuck with me.

Love,

Your forever number one fan

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