Growing up, you were always told, "sticks and stones may break your bones, but words will never hurt you." As time passes and you get older and reflect on this phrase, you begin to realize how flawed this statement really is. After all, words really do hurt, and sometimes, they hurt a lot. In today's generation, people are starting to realize the impact words can have on mental healthy and stability. But now that there's awareness about the power of words, people are using them to their advantage (both positively and negatively). Still, it's baffling how a few sentences can stick with someone for years upon years.
But what if you're someone who is a bit more sensitive to words and the power they hold?
For those whose love language is words of affirmation, the choice of words and tone of certain words easily hurt them. Whether it's in relationships or friendships, the impact of words can have long lasting affects. But if used wrongly, many don't realize the harm they can do. The outcome can be detrimental if not used correctly.
Aside from "words of affirmation," people can be categorized into four other love languages: gifts, physical touch, quality time or acts of service (devotion). While "gifts" and "acts of service" focus on giving and receiving, "physical touch" and "quality time" are more about intimacy and connection. Words of affirmation is different ,though, because instead of being materialistic and relying on tangible items or actions, you care more about feelings and being able to communicate effectively.
Those who depend on this love language seek approval and reassurance from either their spouse, family or friends. Reassurance plays a big role in someone's success, because it effects how they see themselves as an individual. If you constantly put someone down, after a while, they're going to start to believe it. Words not only stick with people for a long period of time, but they can also manifest their every thought. All it takes is one small comment to kill a dream. That's why you always have to think carefully about what you say.
Words of affirmation don't always have to be compliments, though. Sometimes, it's just simple communication throughout the day. Rather than wanting gifts or craving touch, some prefer just sitting down and talking about their life and the experiences they've gone through. And that's okay.
Acceptance is one of the main things everyone wants out of this life. Face it, everyone at some point in time has craved to fit in. So when someone verbally insults you or puts you down, you can't help but feel a little hurt and beaten down. I think those of us who's love language is "words of affirmation" are a little more sensitive than the other four love languages because we take everything literally. We feel and connect with what you say, not what you do.
When people say, "they're just words, they can't really hurt you," I can't help but scoff. Words hurt, especially when it comes from someone that you love or look up to. I know that I can't be the only one who feels demolished when my parents give me the "I'm not mad at you, I'm disappointed" talk. It's crazy how a little seven word phrase can have me breaking down into tears.
Maybe physically, words can't do damage. But mentally, they can kill your self-esteem and mindset. Words cut deeper than a knife. Because of this, love languages are essential to learn and understand.