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The 9 Day Word Fast

We understand the power of spoken words, but we rarely consider the power of fasting words, or avoiding specific phrases and thinking patterns.  How’s this so effective?  Because when we have control over our words, we have control over our body and mind.  Meditation can help with mental strength.  Meditation can address our self-talk.  Are they uplifting or are we putting ourselves down?  Once we address our thoughts, we can then leave the past where it belongs: behind us.  So that the path to our future is open.

  1. Complaining: So why do we need to address complaining? Whining and grumbling basically suck the life out of the atmosphere around you.  It’s a great way to feel down and depressed constantly.  Criticizing is different than offering feedback about specific issues.  The problem with complaining is that when it is pervasive, it paves the way for deeper hurt.  Turn that around today.  Sanitize your mouth from complaining and mindfully choose your words.
  2. Gratitude: Yesterday, we stopped complaining. We’ve all been on the brunt end of complaints when we feel the complainer was unappreciative or cutting.  Because we are made of pure love, we aren’t our true selves when we’re in a constant mode of complaints.  Continue being mindful in speech.  When we stop complaining, we open our eyes to all the great things around us.  Today, focus on the good things in life.  Say words of thanks and praises with each realization.  Gratefulness, joy and thanksgiving makes us feel great.
  3. Criticizing: There’s no better way to shun others in our lives and be completely isolated that to criticize others. It’s the greatest threat to harmony – at home, with friends or at work.  Our relationships are based on trust and criticism (and even silently thinking about it) is a great way to shut that down.  The best way to deal with thoughts of criticism is to be mindful.  Catch yourself, stop and be silent.  Before we think about a word of judgement or criticism, ask yourself “What about this situation affects me and not others?  Are these words beneficial?”  Once we stop thinking of criticism, we see each other as unique beings, we will actually feel great freedom.
  4. Negativity: Negative words can devastate our spirit. When you’re on the lookout on negativity to find fault in everything, then you miss out on the best parts of life. It makes you miserable and you emit miserable vibes.  No one likes to be around you.  If we get in the habit of critical negative thoughts, we automatically respond to opportunities with “my plan will never work anyway”.  We respond to relationships, challenges and life the same way – thinking about how it can go wrong. Why does it feel so good to be a critical person?  Because we get a payoff.  We feel good about playing the victim, about pitying ourselves.  We feel good about bringing down our superiors or bosses.  But actually when we boost our emotions, we boost our immune system.  Today, catch yourself with each negative thought.  Then decide to change your mind.  Yes, it’s that easy
  5. Judgement: It feels good to judge others. We might judge other people’s relationships, work, ethics and we even judge if someone is of value or any worth. We assume we know other people’s intentions.  But we are not one to judge.  We don’t know what others are going through.  We don’t know if we would do exactly the same if we were in that position.   Catch yourself from condemning others today.  Build that habit of leaving hypocrisy behind because we are all imperfect.
  6. Sarcasm: If you have improved relationships, cut out sarcasm. We glorify brutal sarcasm as the pinnacle of humor but it’s actually hostility in disguise. The more vulgar or sarcastic you are, the more clever your cuts and comebacks, the cooler you are.  It’s a constant one-upmanship bantering for jabs until one succumbs to their own insecurities.  We are supposed to desensitize to how rude the conversations get.  They’re all in the name of jest.  Today, change those words to encouragement.  Create fertile soil for uplifting words that create.  Rather than demeaning words that tear down.
  7. Belittle: If we grew up under parents who belittled us, our growth would probably be stunted. The effects of verbal and emotional abuse are long lasting and difficult to heal.  We usually dismiss belittling initially, as a harmless joke.  But over time, the cumulative effect causes wear and tear on the target’s self-esteem.  Catch yourself against being the source of belittlement today.  Speak up if you’re the victim as well.
  8. Gossip: Just hearing this word can provoke anger, concern, embarrassment or sorrow. No one is immune to gossip, we gossip about anyone and everyone.  We gossip to tell others that we have additional inside info or to create a bond with our fellow gossiper, at the expense of the target.  Gossip creates its own life though, expanding in influence and gaining momentum.  Slander can cost someone their good reputation or lifelong hard-earned reputation.  It can also destroy someone’s self confidence and lead to alienation.  That’s why it’s important to understand gossip, not engage and guard against it.  So today, keep gossip out.  Gossip is subtle and enticing.  Decide to disengage.
  9. Contempt: When we communicate with disrespect, we assume a position of moral superiority over others. We mock them with ridicule, call people names and use body language like eye-rolling.  The target of our disrespect feels despised and worthless.  Research shows that couple who speak to each other with contempt are more likely to suffer from infectious illness due to weakened immune systems.  So start boosting your own immunity today by choosing positive thoughts.  Say bye to disrespectful words and hello to happiness!