I just read an article by Sharon Prete....a life coach for Optimum Performance Training... where she described her childhood gymnastics training. When she was in the gym, the coach never allowed anyone to say "can't." Instead...they were taught to say...“I am not able to do that at this moment, but with hard work, dedication and practice I am sure I will master it.” This was a very strong practice.
My Mom was in a head-on auto collision a few years ago. She was 80 years old when it happened. She suffered a broken neck, a broken wrist, a broken foot, several broken ribs and all sorts of bangs and bruises. After the accident, she developed a frozen shoulder and lost the use of her left arm...the arm opposite the arm with the broken wrist. At one point, she could not use three of her four limbs...all while her neck was immobilized in one of those cervical collars. It was a challenging time.
After my mother was released from the rehabilitation hospital...where she was miserable...we brought her home to live with my wife and I. After numerous setbacks...along with several negative experiences with physical and occupational therapists...my Mom would only trust me. It put a of pressure on me.
Luckily, I got some help from a doctor David Leaf who knew how to cure a frozen shoulder...among other things. He had one of the strangest bedside manners I have ever witnessed but he was also a genius and a good teacher. He showed me what to do. I became my Mom's "trainer."
While serving in the role of trainer, I learned a valuable lesson. Words have power. They have energy. When you utter them you imprint reality with their vibration. I know this because I have experienced it over and over...firsthand.
At one point, my Mom was very discouraged. She was weak...in pain...and couldn't do much of anything. She didn't like doing exercises and wasn't making much progress. One night while putting her through a series of exercises...she was at a low...extremely discouraged. Out of sheer desperation I told her to say the words "I can do it" before performing the exercise. I insisted she say it whether or not she believed it. She obliged. The turnaround was instantaneous. She was stronger. We built on it. She improved steadily. When I noticed any hint of weakened spirit, I'd say "Strong, Strong" and insist she say the same. "Strong, Strong" and "I can do it" became our mantras.
My Mom recovered. She ain't perfect but she's almost 84 and has the use of her shoulder and all her limbs. I continue to be my Mom's "trainer" to this day...even though she was able to move back home and live on her own.
My Mom had lots of assistance with her recovery...seen and unseen. But there's no doubt in my mind...words played a crucial role.
I invite you to harness the power of words. When faced with a daunting challenge...a heavy weight...many miles...a complicated problem....or any number of the hurdles we face on a day-to-day basis...pound your chest and say whatever beautiful words of courage and love you can muster.