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Words and Warm Feet

Updated: Jan 18, 2023

"Don't ever diminish the power of words. Words move hearts and hearts move limbs."

-Hamza Yusuf

When my oldest daughter, Gabby, was in kindergarten, she had a very caring and empathetic babysitter. And on cold mornings, before school, Tia Teresa would go out of her way to keep Gabby’s feet warm. She would blow warm air into Gabby’s socks, before slipping on her shoes. It was Tia’s way of ensuring Gabby was off to a warm start.

When my teenager, Adam, eats hot chicken soup, I remind him to blow cool air onto his spoon. Mouth burns are no fun.

It is interesting how we can use our mouths to blow both hot and cool air. We seem to instinctively know how to compress the air, transforming warm breath into cool.

Not long ago, I shared this observation with my niece’s daughter, Gigi. I stretched our conversation by asking the six-year-old if she could think of other ways that we could harness the breeze from our mouths. Without much hesitation, Gigi offered, “Whistle! We can whistle.” Raising her hand excitedly, Gigi went on, “Bubbles! We can also blow bubbles!”

I began contemplating other examples of dichotomy from the same source. I honed in on my favorite: words.

When we string words into sentences, energized words can have the power to lift, inspire, comfort, encourage, motivate or heal. But words can also form daggers. Words, can equally hurt, humiliate, incite, trigger, break, anger, or crush a person.

“Words are like eggs dropped from great heights; you can no more call them back than ignore the mess they leave when they fall.” -Jodi Picoult

How we string words is a decision made by our brains. Our brains are the vortex of our thoughts. And our words are the flute of our thoughts. In some cases, that flute can be more like a megaphone. Yikes!

"Raise your words, not your voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder." -Rumi

Yes, it is important to think before we speak and best to mind our words when angry with neighbor, relative or co-worker. But let us circle back to the vortex of words: the thoughts in our brain. The thoughts (and words) we choose about ourselves can be just as important as the words we use with others.

If we use better words when we speak to ourselves or about ourselves, we will lather our minds with positivity. Self-speak can reshape how we see ourselves in this world. If we paint ourselves with sunnier colors and adjectives, we might remold our outlook on life. Positivity can be contagious. Why not be a "superspreader" of positive words?

When canoeing in self-doubt or low self-esteem, we can start to sink. Why not be preventive with the words and thoughts we utter to ourselves? We can choose words that oil our minds. We have the power to refurnish your headspace.

There is a line in a Jack Johnson song, Radiate, which makes simple sense, “You walk into the world you make.” So, why not create a world in which you love all the furniture pieces?

For those of you who enjoy writing affirming quotes on post-it notes, here’s a great page that reaffirms the power of words. Check it out. And check YOU out…you look fabulous today!

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Rosa Valle-Lopez
Rosa Valle-Lopez
Feb 18, 2021

Wow. Thank you for the amazing feedback. And you quote RWE! Great stuff!


“Refurnishing your headspace” and “oiling our minds” – essential components of the science behind “good vibes”. As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “what we seek we shall find; what we flee from flees from us”. As a devout seeker of good vibes, good times, and good company, I’ll have to remind myself to use the compass of positive self-speak to aid in navigating the journey of life with all its blessings. This was a refreshing read - thanks for sharing Ms. Ordaz.

P.S. I wish I had someone blowing in my socks when I was younger..maybe I wouldn’t suffer from chronic cold feet as an adult :P

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