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  • Writer's pictureAlex Young

How to reframe negative words into empowering ones

'The limits of my language mean the limits of my world'

Ludwig Wittgenstein

The words we use to describe our situations have impact. Not only do they inform others around us as to how we view ourselves and our expectations but they also form part of our personal identities. When we tell ourselves that there is something negative going on, we surrender to it.

When we instead approach something with realism, acceptance and aim to frame it positively, we can equip ourselves with a better mindset as we hear the words we speak! It takes some training and is definitely easier to implement in certain situations that others but it's definitely something to bear in mind if you're looking to improve your personal empowerment.

Here are 20 negative words / phrases, reframed into positive ones to get you started:

Failure ➜ Learning

Exhausted ➜ Playing in overtime

Disappointed ➜ Delayed

Stuck ➜ Exploring new angles

Overwhelmed ➜ Temporary imbalance

Down ➜ On route to a turnaround

Embarrassed ➜ Aware

Rejected ➜ Misunderstood

Nervous ➜ Energised

Lost ➜ Searching

Hate ➜ I prefer

Sick of ➜ Want to cleanse from

Stupid ➜ Looking to gain further knowledge

Destroyed ➜ Set-back

Drained ➜ Need time for recharging

Afraid ➜ Uncomfortable

Furious ➜ Passionate

Sad ➜ Sorting my thoughts

Have to ➜ Get to

Which words do you habitually use (whether self-talk or vocalised to those around you) that create negative feelings in your life?

If they didn't make this list, you can come up with your own alternatives - note them down (mentally, in written format or even tell your loved ones about them so they can help you) and then see how you can reframe them to be more freeing and uplifting!


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