5 Ways to Make Your Words Count in the Workplace

Motivational writer Dave Hedges once said, “The words you speak are powerful. They can mend a broken heart and help repair a shattered mind. They can also destroy a person’s confidence and make people feel worthless. Choose your words carefully.”

Whether you say words out loud or they’re running through your head, you can make the choice to take a positive or negative path. The words we use always matter.

Here are five ways to use words in a powerful and positive way in a professional setting:

1) Give compliments. Every day, try to give someone a compliment. Don’t give the compliment and wait for one in return—you might get one or you might not. The point is to make a meaningful difference in someone’s day.

2) Practice positive affirmations. You have to change your mindset to rewind the negative self-chatter in your head. If you can’t come up with anything positive immediately, collect positive quotes and practice saying them out loud. You’ll get the hang of it—and your mind will be waiting to hear them.

3) Think before you speak. We’ve all encountered situations that can change our attitudes in the blink of an eye. Before you say something and react on impulse, take a deep breath, think carefully and decide what message you want to convey. Then, do it professionally and intelligently. This is where learning new words can come in handy.

4) Take responsibility. Own your mistakes. Understand how your words may have made a negative impact on someone or something. Don’t apologize for something you have no control over—apologize when you mean it.

5) Count your blessings. We all have so much to be thankful for, but I’ve noticed people have forgotten how to say thank you. Two tiny little words can have a huge impact on someone else. Change your mindset, change your world. How about doing that for someone else?

Judy Hoberman, international speaker, trainer, coach and mentor, is president of Selling In A Skirt and author of “Walking On the Glass Floor: 7 Essential Qualities of Women Who Lead.”