I recently came across this post about an experiment that proves that our words effect our environment and all with in it.
A Japanese scientist filled three beakers with uncooked rice and covered the rice with water. Each day he would speak to the rice. The first beaker was told “thank you.” The second beaker was told that it was a “fool.” The final beaker of rice was ignored. He labeled the beakers and, for 30 days, had school children read the labels on the beakers out loud. After 30 days the beaker that was thanked began to ferment and to emit a “pleasant aroma,” according to the video. The rice in the second beaker, which was told that it was foolish, turned black. The beaker of ignored rice was moldy and rotting. Clearly, our words mean something and have a great effect on where they are directed.
I told Man about the experiment.
“I think this would be a great project to do with Buddy and Bug,” I told him. “So from the next 30 days, tell Buddy he’s stupid and tell Bug he’s amazing!”
I jest! I did actually say that to Man and we had a good laugh. Then yesterday, I set up glass bowls of rice and labeled them as the scientist did. I told the boys the label is more there to remind you of which one you should speak kindly to and which one you speak nasty to. Of course it is too early now to see any effects on the rice but I can tell you that it has already effected us.
“You’re a stupid idiot!” I hear Bug shout to, what we call, the Sad Rice.
“Hello, Happy Rice! Thank you! You’re great!” he cooed to the Happy Rice.
I’m doing the same every time I pass the bowls. What’s funny is I feel really AWFUL telling the rice that it is stupid and gross. “Stupid” is not a word we throw around lightly in our home. Bug noted that it made him feel badly too.
“I like to talk to the Happy Rice last because I don’t like how I feel when I say bad things to the Sad Rice,” he confessed to me.
“That is a great idea, Bug. I feel bad saying ugly things too. I’m going to speak to the Happy Rice last so I feel better.” I do like to end on a high note but honestly, I still walk away sort of embarrassed and ashamed. I mean, the Sad Rice “hears” the kind things I am saying to the Happy Rice. It’s just breaks my heart. And then I remind myself that it is just rice.
“Maybe if we say really sweet things to Drake, he’ll ferment and his breath will smell better,” Bug suggested. What’s funny is, the people who I’ve shared this with are right away effected. We’ll talk and they’ll say, “Oh. That was not Happy Rice talk.”
I’ve also decided to take the experiment a step farther. I have a dear friend who has been hurting and sad for several years now. Her heart is broken and she can’t get out of her funk. Sounds like me about a year ago. I told her that, though her pain is legitimate and valid, she has to rise above it. We have to make intentional decisions to make it right. I’m still having to do this. We have to take captive our negative thoughts. They still come to mind but when they do they must be shut down immediately. We can’t go wallow in it. I told her about the rice experiment.
“You have to do your part in crawling out of this hole but I’m going to try and help you. Every day, for 30 days I’m going to send you a text or phone message that speaks something positive about you. You may not argue with me about it. I am telling you my truth. You do your part and receive my compliment or encouragement and capture your negative thoughts of self and situation. Let’s see if it will effect you the same way it does the rice. You will be my Happy Rice.”
This message is not new. We all know that our words have impact.
“Words kill. Words give life. They are either poison or fruit – you choose.” Proverbs 18:21
“Kindness in words creates confidence…” Lao Tzu
“Whatever words we speak should be chosen with care, for people will hear them and be influenced by them for good or ill.” Buddha
“Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” Proverbs 16:24
Be gracious to each other! Not everyone is where you are or does things the way you do. So what! Telling them that they are wrong all of the time deteriorates their being. Just love them the way they are.
So we must be responsible in what we say and we should all try to speak more goodness and kindness into our homes, work space and environment. The other side to this however is that we can not say, “I’m like this because so-and-so used to say this to me.” That may very well be true, but after identifying how the wound occurred it is now our responsibility to clean the wound. You may not continue to limp and walk with that crutch of blaming someone else. We have to know that those nasty words were lies and speak truth to ourselves. You won’t believe your own words at first but eventually the words will become your truth.
I have finally decided to start believing the good things people say to me. You know how it’s easier to believe the bad than it is to believe the good? I have been paying more attention to the positive things I’m told. Yes, someone once used to tell me that I was fat and society tells me I’m fat because I don’t wear a size 4 or smaller but a few months ago the light bulb came on for me that those things were lies and all of the many, many people in my life who tell me that I’m beautiful and that I have a great figure are the people who are speaking truth to me. My truth was that I was gross and fat and misshaped and ill proportioned but it’s just not the truth. I’ve found the last few months of believing that I’m pretty and that I have a beautiful body has been WONDERFUL! It’s so much better than hating myself! Duh. And it’s made me lose the urge to eat bad things. I’m not dieting and I’m hardly exercising and I’ve lost weight because I’m not restricting myself and shaming myself 24/7.
I went jeans shopping, (more like hunting) and I found myself at Buckle. The sales person asked me what size I wore.
“I don’t know really. I haven’t bought jeans in a year. I think I’m somewhere around a 10 or an 8…maybe even a 12. I just have no idea.”
He grabbed several different styles of 10s and set me up with a changing room.
The first pair I tried on looked awful. I could barely button them and I was coming out of the top. The old me would’ve fought tears and said things to self like, Ugh! You’re so gross. Why can’t you lose weight?
But the new me knew better.
I just did a show where I was scantily clothed (well, very fitted clothing anyway) and the response was by no means negative. I knew I looked good. My cast mates in the dressing room were very vocal about my itty bitty waist that I usually hide under flow-y loose tops in a hopes to make my boobs look smaller. (Total fail, by the way.)
So the New Me looked at myself in those jeans and thought, I have a great figure. What is wrong with these jeans?
I tried another pair of the same size but a different cut. They were too big. After half a day in them, I knew they’d be falling off me since denim stretches. I reported back to the sales guy. He brought me a pair of jeans in a size 8. They fit perfectly. How dumb is that that the same store can carry two different sizes, a 10 that is too small and an 8 that is just right? No wonder women are going crazy!
But I am not the number on the scale and I’m not the number on my jeans. I am the woman that my friends say I am. I am that girl with an itty bitty waist like my cast mates say I am. I am the woman that my husband loves and who he whispers huskily, “I love your hips!”
I will have a bad morning with my children and spend the rest of the day beating myself up. I am not a terrible mother. I am a good mother who other mom’s seek advice from. I am a good mom who’s children love her and who they call “The best!” I am a good mother who’s husband crows about how great she is with her sons. Furthermore, I am irreplaceable to my family. If I were gone they would need way more than a housekeeper, chauffer and cook to fill my spot. They would need all of that and…a SHOW GIRL!
It takes awhile but we should believe the good things people say about us. My truth about myself was so skewed. You’d think I had Fun House mirrors in my home! We have to forgive ourselves when we screw up and speak kindly to ourselves. Be gracious to ourselves!
I’ll take picture of our rice project and report back in 30 days. I don’t know if the rice will be effected or not but I know that our home has already been making changes because of it and that is well worth it!