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Reactive versus Proactive Language

I have a challenge for you.  Over the next 7 days, pay attention to the language that you use.  Is it empowering or disempowering language?  How does it make you feel – better or worse? 


Chances are that if you are feeling disempowered and without energy, you are using reactive language.  Some examples are:

There is nothing I can do.

That is just the way that I am.

He (She) makes me so mad.

They won’t allow that.

I have to do that.

I can’t …

I must …

If only …


If you are feeling energized and powerful, you are using proactive language.  Some examples are:

Let’s look at our alternatives.

I can choose a different approach.

I can control my own feelings.

I can create an effective presentation.

I will choose an appropriate response.

I choose …

I prefer …

I will …


If you notice yourself using reactive language, STOP IT!  Make a different choice.  Make agreements with the people around you to notice when you are being a victim (reactive) and give them permission to point it out to you.  Change is easier when you are supported or you do it together.


Have fun!


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