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  • Writer's pictureSimone Grove

The Healing Power of Words

Updated: May 8

One thing that has fascinated me for a very long time is how influential the things we say and think can be, especially when it comes to our health and wellbeing. This doesn’t get talked about very much, if at all, in clinical circles - and yet the evidence for it and its link to the mind-body connection are incredibly strong.

Today I wanted to talk a little more about how our choice of words can be very powerful, especially during treatment or recovery and when dealing with chronic illness.

How thoughts become things

Words hold a huge amount of power - mainly because they influence our thoughts and beliefs. Modern psychology and neuroscience have proven that what we say verbally has a massive impact on how we view the world and what happens to us externally – and vice-versa.

As I mentioned in my blog on the mind-body connection, this can be most clearly illustrated by the placebo effect. When testing drugs, pharmaceutical researchers give one group the active drug, and another a sugar pill that appears to be real, so that nobody knows for sure which they have been given. This is to test the true effectiveness of the drug.

In many studies, people who believe they are taking the active drug see similar, if not better, results than those who were actually given it. This demonstrates the remarkable power of the mind in a tangible sense – proving that when we believe something to be true, it often manifests in reality.

There is so much power and energy behind our words and thoughts – not just in terms of what we say and think, but the intentions behind them. The people who took the sugar pill saw an improvement in symptoms because they believed that they were taking the drug. Changing your words and thoughts can be simple with time and practice – but changing the belief system behind them is where the bulk of the work lies if you want to change your current reality. This takes time, and it’s well worth sticking with if you are struggling with a health condition or issue that affects your day to day life.

Changing your words can change your world

When we think about applying this philosophy to our health and wellbeing, things really start to get exciting. It’s important to say that more often than not we don’t consciously make ourselves unwell with our thoughts and words – it’s a process that takes place at a deeper level, as a result of our past experiences and conditioning. We become accustomed to thinking and feeling a certain way, especially if we’re seeing the result of that manifesting in our reality right now.

For example, if you’re in pain right now, and you know you have an injury in that area, it makes sense to talk about the pain, to expect the pain and reinforce that every day, throughout the day.

When we want to use words to change our reality, we have to break that habit. Instead of seeing what’s in front of us, or feeling the pain now and responding to it, we have to imagine a different reality and work towards that. Over time, as we talk to ourselves differently, different outcomes can occur.

If your previous words and thoughts have contributed to how you’re feeling now, the good news is that actually changing the words we use to tell ourselves things and the thoughts behind them can actually shift your energy and create a different reality.

You may have heard me talk about this concept before, the world being one of mirrors - the words and thoughts which we project out into the world, are quite simply being reflected back to us.

Some tips when using words to shape your reality

It can be difficult to imagine a different scenario or outcome for your health, or any other area of your life for that matter, when the reality you’re experiencing feels very different.

Here are a few tips I found have been useful for both myself and my clients on the journey to creating a new reality and enhancing wellbeing with the power of words:

Take your time: Don’t be hasty with this process…it isn’t going to happen overnight. It’s also important to be mindful not to get disheartened if you find it’s taking some time to create new thinking patterns, or to see results. When you think about how long it has taken to manifest the results of past words now, and how long you’ve been thinking and speaking a certain way, it makes sense that the process of unravelling that and creating new ways of thinking and speaking may take a little time. Be patient with yourself!

Practice makes perfect: Keep going, and keep putting what you’ve learned into practice. Try to practice daily if possible – and over time you’ll start to see a shift in your reality.

Use tools to your advantage: There are lots of tools you can use – from journaling and making notes to leave around the house to remind you, to simple affirmations, visualisations and chants. I also recommend a buddy system, where possible. Support is key – so if you have people around you to help and hold you accountable, you will be able to go further than if you’re doing this alone.

Be gentle with yourself: You may find yourself slipping back into old ways of thinking and talking, especially at the beginning. Don’t let that dissuade you – stick with it! Becoming disheartened and giving up can be tempting, but keep the end goal in mind, (your why) whether that’s reduced pain, healing a persistent illness or a more positive outlook. The mind-body connection and understanding (and harnessing) the power of words is very closely linked with the work that I am doing in integrative cancer care. This is the basis of all my work both within my group programmes and when working 1:1 work with clients.

Find out more here – or if you would like more information about working with me for mindset coaching and Neuro-linguistic programming then please get in touch via my website.

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