Wow.. if this quote doesn't make you reflect.. right?
No kidding, I run across these quotes in the books I have read over the years and I snap a picture of them. As you might imagine I have THOUSANDS of pictures of this kind on my phone. (to be exact – 13,388).
Consider the statement though.
"YOU ARE MORE POWERFUL THAN YOU THINK YOU ARE. ACT ACCORDINGLY"
In many situations, we don't feel super powerful at all. But if I got pulled over for speeding and told the patrolman in a scowl…"you are not real smart pulling me over…I am innocent and I am taking you to court!"…you have the power to get yourself placed in his backseat..
The reality is that everything we do or say carries the ability to land a blow that can rock someone's world for the good or the bad. Think about what happens if I respond in a negative way if someone asks me a question at the office. If I respond poorly and don't think before I speak (as I am prone to do) My negative "power" seeps into them and it spreads like wildfire.. In the end, several go home that night and share that "power" even further. It's "no win" situation for anyone.
This quote made me think of a passage from the book of James: "The tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire…" Bottom line: it takes a little spark from our words to cause a massive issue quickly and ruin a day or a week of someone. And we are prone to this…especially at work.
However, this doesn't just apply at work and not even with just words…Most of us have young people in our lives – whether they be our own kids or our kids, kids - or the neighborhood kids…even the kids we have at the bank on Monday and Friday. We just need to understand that we are significantly more powerful than we think we are..with our words, looks, nods, tone…so many things to keep in mind as we communicate.
So, if you determine you've done this…take the risk of approaching your coworker/family member/friend and simply apologize…and both parties will learn and grow from it.
I won't get it right all of the time…and I will speak before I think sometimes…but if I realize the power I have (and you have) life will be better.
Have an incredible week!