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Watch Your Words… Four Guidelines

We have all heard that our words can either lift someone or belittle someone.  Our words can encourage and coach or deflate and defame others.  A famous World War II poster read, “Careless words cost lives.”   This message is still true today.   Here are four guidelines to follow before repeating something you have heard.

  1. Is it true?  Unless you are certain it is true, say nothing.
  2. Is it confidential?  Did the person you heard it from betray a confidence?  Will you be betraying a confidence by repeating it?  If so, say nothing.
  3. Will repeating the message tear someone down or build them up?  Make sure the words you speak are beneficial to others.  If not, say nothing.
  4. Is it really necessary to repeat the message?  If not, say nothing.

These are effective guidelines to live by whether it was in WW II or in 2011.  Perhaps especially today since we live in a 24/7 hyped-up social networking world.

Make sure your words count for something positive

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Judy W Bell

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