Knowing the Difference Between Toxic and Loving Remarks

I’m a huge believer that words and the essence of communication is the backbone of a relationship. A mother and her son, two girls who have been best friends for years, a loving couple, or even the relationship with yourself – the way that we chose to communicate will impact the relationship as a whole and will make or break our perceptions of each other or ourselves. What I have learned in my 22 years of growth is that the old saying that was drilled into our minds as children is something we should think about every day.

“Think before you speak.” Ah yes, classic.

As a child, I never saw this as more than black and white. I never considered the depth of this saying. Yet, as I grew and became more intact with relationships, as my maturity kicked in, I began to see this for what it means. I believe that remembering that the people we are conversing with are humans just like us and the simple notion of considering the emotional impact our words mean can benefit the nature of conversing.

“Think before you speak –“ because your wording may make someone you love upset.

“Think before you speak –“ because you may be deceiving without even knowing.

“Think before you speak” – because the repetition of negative phrases toward yourself is projecting and giving power to your insecurities.

 


There’s a certain level of manipulation that can be reflected in our wording of statements. I’m particularly talking about conversations that are held between someone who has a certain bond with another human but also the bond between one’s own self-conscious. When we are describing our love for someone, there should be reasons for loving them and reasons for loving what they do for us. And in a healthy relationship between two people, that feeling should be mutual. There’s a certain level on unhealthiness that is derived from someone only loving the other based on their selfish needs. A lot of the time, these people are not even aware that they’re loving out of a selfish way but you can see it based on paying attention to their remarks.

Take this scenario:

“I love you-”

“Tell me why you love me-”

“Because you hang out with me, you cook me dinner, you keep me from being lonely, you’re fun to be around – “


Although these are technically great reasons to love someone, it can also be a series of deceptive remarks pointing out that this person could be blind by their own self-needs to be satisfied.

Another way to show appreciation with these remarks would be to think before you speak.

“I love you –“

“Tell me why you love me –“

“Because you chose to spend your free time hanging out with me which shows that you enjoy my company as much as I enjoy yours. You show me love by cooking me dinner from time to time. You are my best friend and favorite person to be around –“


Understand that there are loving and toxic remarks. Loving remarks show that an effort was made.

Which of these compliments would truly impact you?

“You’re so fun to hang out with” or “You have such a happy glow and easy-going persona that I love being around”


There are loving and toxic remarks that are easy to differentiate as long as you pay attention. Pay attention to what others are saying but also pay close attention to what you are choosing to say – whether that be to others or yourself.


Listen to your thoughts and what you say aloud. I have recognized that a lot of things people say about their perceptions of themselves is negative. Repeating negative feedback only feeds the negative thought, which can lead to self-doubt. We should always strive to say positive things about ourselves and others, it reflects naturally over time.

“Think before you speak –“ because being in tune with our thoughts and emotions is one of the most powerful things we are capable of doing.

 

- Harmony B.


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