July 15, 2018

What Does Your Word Mean?

Once upon a time in middle school I made plans with my long time friend Jenny to go trick or treating together on Halloween.

But instead of meeting up with her, I went out with my new friend Cassie, without letting Jenny know or inviting her along. Not cool.

Dad let me know when I got home what a bad move that was. (Jenny’s mom had called looking for me on her daughter’s behalf, so he knew what was up.)

He admonished that when you give your word, you stick to it. When you say you’re going to do something, you do it.

Message received.

In Landmark Forum they make a point of driving that lesson home, too …

On day one our leader got everyone to agree to be in their seat and ready to go on time for the rest of the workshop. He even got us to agree to help each other be present and attentive on time. When there were loiterers still chatting in the lobby after first break was over, and when he asked why we didn’t help our classmates get in their seats on time, we all got the lecture about breaking our word.

It could seem like overkill and making a big deal about nothing (“I was 30 seconds late – chill out, buddy”), but the point – made by my dad and our forum leader – is that keeping your word is a big deal.

Do what you say you’re going to do.

Conscious creators know better than most the importance of keeping our word, since our “word is our wand,” as my bff Florence Scovel-Shinn says.

If we don’t treat our word as meaningful, how can we expect Universe to?

If we haven’t learned that our word has power (and to take that power seriously), how can we expect to experience its power in our manifesting?

When what you say doesn’t mean much, you train yourself not to believe what you say.

So when you declare, “I am a money magnet!” it’s easy to doubt because you’re in the habit of throwing your word around loosely. You’ve said other things that you didn’t take seriously. (“Sure, let’s do lunch soon!”; “No, I don’t mind at all.”) This is just another one for the list.

And vice versa – when you keep your word because that’s what you do, then you learn that your word means something. It has power and impact. Your word can be relied on. It’s happening, because you said so.

Okay, so that’s the backstory for what I wanted to share today …

This morning as I was reading Charles Duhigg on the importance of focus and how those with strong mental models succeed more often than those without, it inspired me to tune in again to what I’m creating in life.

(Duhigg’s right, I figured. Holding a strong mental model of what you want is the key to getting there. I don’t suspect he’s a studied conscious creator but he sure sounds like one in this chapter.)

So for good measure, I tuned in again to what I’m creating. Big beautiful brave things.

And as my gremlin tried to chime in with a thought along the lines of, “Who do you think you are (to think you could create such big things)?” that gremlin got dismissed so fast it wasn’t funny. That critical voice didn’t get a foothold because I automatically and immediately knew: it’s happening because I said so.

That’s what happens when I give my word.

It’s happening.

And I have been giving my word to this big dream! I have been speaking it for long enough that it feels natural, so it’s got some power invested in it!

I know that once I say so, it’s a done deal. There’s no backing out. There’s no waffling. It’s happening, because I said so. As drilled into me by my no-messing-around Marine Corps dad and that super strict Forum leader.

  • That’s why in my 20s divorce wasn’t an option for me. I gave my word to be married and I would hold up my end. (Fortunately for us both, my husband didn’t feel the same commitment!)
  • That’s why when I write an appointment on my calendar, I don’t change them. I have whiteout in the drawer for clients who request changes, but it is very rarely me who requests a reschedule.
  • That’s why when a friend asks casually as we part ways, “Talk to you tomorrow?” I think before just automatically answering, “Sure.” Am I going to talk to him tomorrow? Maybe, maybe not. So that’s what I say: “Maybe, maybe not.” Because if I said yes, then that’s a commitment I hold myself to.

For those who get frustrated because it’s hard to get a commitment from me, I’m not hard to pin down because I’m a Libra who changes her mind on a dime. (Okay, maybe that, too. Mostly I’m difficult to pin down because once I say I’m doing it, it’s a done deal. And I just want to make sure I want it before I say it.

Meaning, I have been trained to make my word meaningful.

And here’s the cool part …

Treating my word like it means something translates really well to my conscious creation practice.

It’s why when I put something in writing, whether it’s an affirmation or a pray rain journal entry or a calendar appointment or a signature on a marriage license, that thing is happening.

Now I sound like the one making small things a big deal, but it’s why I’m reliable at creating what I speak and write and think. My word means something.

I realize as I write this post that I have room for improvement on this habit. I’m not perfect, and maybe it’s good enough as is. But this really isn’t intended to be about me …

I share this so you can be more aware of how you’re using your word and what you’re speaking into reality.

Here’s to using our word with integrity so our manifesting practices have strength, too. 🙂

  • Danielle says:

    Great post Jeannette! I belonged to a large positive thinking organization several years ago. The leader of the group always said “If you’re not 5 minutes early you’re late” and I have always loved that saying and lived by it!
    Our words are super powerful, they are magic, thank you for reminding me of that again!

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