It’s Not What You Say But How You Say It!

Posted: October 27, 2010 in Uncategorized


“Stick and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.”

Ha! What a big ole lie that is. The words we choose and the way we say them can make  or break us. Think about it: a snide comment can cause unseen and untold pain deep within us; an encouraging word and tone of voice can give us all the courage we need to accomplish anything. 

Everyone I know has a story to tell of someone telling them they can’t and someone else telling them they can. It was my experience that that “someone” was usually a teacher, or an adult whose words or tone of voice could slice through me, wounding me deeply, or they could make me feel like the world was my oyster.

Of course, kids say pretty nasty things too. Verbal bullying has become  an enormous problem in North American society as we’ve seen on the nightly news lately.

Words have power and we are wise not to forget that.

When I was a little girl, my Mom taught me  (and  I learned it again in Broadcasting School) the old adage: It’s not what you say but how you say it! This is a motto to live by if you want to effectively communicate. I have centered lots of seminars and classes on this theme and have been thrilled everytime to see people change the ways in which they express themselves.

It’s a good idea to pay heed to how we are saying what we say. Tone of voice conveys a big part of our message – much more than words do. Words only count for about 7 – 10% of our entire communication. How we say those words carries far more impact than the mere words themselves. 

It is too easy, when we’re in a hurry or are multi-tasking, to sound curt and short-tempered. We can come across very differently from what we had intended. We can  easily lose the deal or hurt our children’s feelings with a wrong tone of voice.

Today, I present a challenge to all who read this blog to pay attention not only to what you are saying but to how you are saying it as well. Take just a nano-second to remember to get the words, the tone of voice and your body language all in synch. Think before you speak. Your audience will appreciate the split second you take to talk with them and not at them.

Go well and speak from your heart.

  1. I am enjoying reading your blog and I wish you all the best with it.

  2. […] It’s Not What You Say But How You Say It! ( This entry was posted in Communication, Representational Systems and tagged Auditory, Auditory digital, Kinesthetic, Neuro-linguistic programming, NLP, Psychology, Representational systems (NLP), Visual. Bookmark the permalink. ← We all keep on growing….and I keep on writing…. LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

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