Category "Listening"


In my last post I quoted The World Peace Prayer Society and their statement about words…

Words carry vibrations strong enough to inspire, heal and transform the human heart

I know from experience and my work that words also can do the very opposite.

In our house, we have certain words that are not allowed, frowned upon or withdrawn and changed immediately.  These are words that have negative connotations, may sound aggressive or are used to belittle, abuse, humiliate or bully.

One of these is the word STUPID.  And there is a reason behind it.  When I was little I was called stupid at least once a day.

When I first started primary school I was seated at the very front of the class by myself.  I was right in front of the teacher and whenever she wanted me to understand something, she would shout at me and exaggerate her speech.  If I didn’t understand what she said (as she was shouting at me and exaggerating her speech) I would say “Pardon?” and she would shout  “Are you STUPID!?”

You can imagine what the other children did with this …..

I have a hearing impairment.  It’s due to damaged nerve endings in my left ear.  I’ve never let it disable me or stop me from doing anything.  I was taught to lip read at an early age. And when people meet me, unless they are told, I don’t think they would know.

This particularly powerful word was condoned at home too and I grew up believing it.  As an adult I spent a lot of my life running around collecting every piece of paper I could to prove that I wasn’t, in fact, stupid.

As a therapist and teacher I like to use very positive words and help people to change the labels that have been attached to them from the past.

Are there any powerful negative words that you never use?  Are there powerful words that you hear everyday?  Are there labels that you still carry that you’d like to be rid of?  What labels are we giving to our own children?


When we really listen to a child – we enter into their world.  Their reality.

When we really listen to a child – the simple things become magical and our lives are never the same:

A stick becomes a magical wishing and healing wand to make all creatures love each other and bring peace to the whole world.

A tree becomes a magical kingdom where everyone is safe and no-one can harm us

A blanket becomes a magic carpet that carries us off to far away exotic lands

When we really listen to a child – time stands still and in that very moment our hearts open up to amazing possibilities.

when we really listen to a child – we become like a child ourselves.

Some of us have forgotten how to think like a child and how to really listen to our children.  In the hurry and busyness of grown up life, time becomes so precious that we don’t want to feel like we’ve squandered it on something so trivial.

That precious time can never be spent on anything more important than really listening to our children.  They have the most amazing insights to offer us.  They make sense of the world and make it easy for us to understand what is really important.

Take a moment today, this week, sometime soon- to really listen to a child.  Here’s how:

Stop whatever you’re doing.  Really stop what you’re doing.  Put it out of your mind.  Make a conscious decision to spend time with your child.  Open your ears, but much more importantly open your heart.  Don’t question, correct or judge – just be.  Just listen and try to understand their world from their perspective.  Get to know them, really know and understand them.  Find out what they love and what makes them afraid.  You don’t have to ask a single question – just give them your full and undivided attention – and listen.  Make this a regular event and your life will change forever.

Share the Magic!: If you have found this blog post helpful please pass it on.  We want to help as many children, parents, families and schools as possible.  Thank you x