Having an amazing life starts with learning to become impeccable with our words…know when to keep your mouth shut.
It happened again. Someone made a political post on Facebook, and well, I REALLY wanted to jump in. I had the most incredible comeback. It would have shown the entire community the irony of their post, put that person in their place, and by the way, it was hilarious!
Nevertheless, I kept my pie hole shut. Why? As hard as it was, I’m trying to be impeccable with my words.
I first heard the idea of being impeccable with my words when I read Don Miguel Ruiz’s book, “The Four Agreements.” It’s a book of ancient Wisdom as passed down from the Toltecs, a past civilization known throughout southern Mexico for their enlightenment and knowledge. The first agreement is “To be impeccable with my words.”
The book teaches that with our words, we get what we speak out. “If I love myself, I will express that love in my interactions with you, and then I am being impeccable with the word because that action will produce a like reaction. If I love you, then you will love me. If I insult you, you will insult me. If I have gratitude for you, you will have gratitude for me. If I’m selfish with you, you will be selfish with me.”
It’s so true! My words can create or decimate. They can heal or destroy. The law of attractions says “like attracts like,” so If I want an amazing life I first have to speak amazing things.
By the way, If you haven’t read, “The Four Agreements,” check it out; it’s worth the read.
Check yourself before you wreck yourself
Being impeccable with my words seems downright impossible at times! When someone says or does something that pisses me off my first reaction is to bite back. It’s part of our instinctual fight or flight mechanism, which is why we are easily triggered. After all, we’re not called to be doormats or take abuse. Even still, I can be impeccable with my words in every situation.
It’s like Thumper’s dad told him “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”
Have you ever seen a relationship destroyed because someone says something they later regretted? Have you said something that ruined a relationship? I have, and it’s painful. Sometimes being impeccable with my words means I remain silent; it’s better to say nothing than to regret our words when it’s too late.
When should I keep my big yap shut and when should I speak up?
Knowing when to speak is a form of discipline that requires wisdom. It’s like Thumper’s dad told him “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”
The Poet Rumi gives us an excellent guideline to know when we should talk or when we should keep our big yaps shut.
“Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates:
At the first gate ask yourself, “Is is true?”
At the second gate ask, “Is it necessary?”
At the third gate ask, “Is it kind?”
Is it true? This is perhaps the most difficult question to answer. The philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche said, “There are no facts, only interpretations.” Most of the time what I have to say is an opinion and not the truth. So if it’s not true; I would be better off zipping my lips.
Is it necessary? A “necessity” meets a need. If I am filtering my words through this gate, I need to ask, “what need am I meeting and how is this helpful?” I also wonder, “Who’s need am I meeting? Mine or theirs?” If I’m honest, most of the time I’m meeting my selfish needs. In this case, I should probably put a sock in it.
Is it kind? Here’s a rule of thumb: if it’s funny at someone else’s expense, then it’s not kind. I’ll admit that it is painful to hold onto a great “zinger.” On more than one occasion I have been unable to resist myself, but I regret it when I see I’ve hurt someone. If what I’m saying isn’t kind I for sure need to keep the old pie hole shut.
To be impeccable with my words means that I am checking to make sure that every word out of my mouth is genuine, helpful and loving. If I say something that is unkind, I’m not going to change anyone’s mind, anyway. In the end, the first step to having an amazing life is to speak life; otherwise, I should….Well, no need for me to say.
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