The Tone of Voice
It’s not so much what you say,
As the manner in which you say it;
It’s not so much the language you use
As the one in which you convey it;
‘Come here!’ I sharply said,
And the child cowered and wept.
‘Come here’, I said softly—
He looked and smiled
And straight to my lap he crept.
Words may be mild and fair
And the tone my pierce like a dart;
Words my be soft as the summer air,
But the tone may break my heart;
For words come from the mind
Grow by study and art—
But tone leaps from the inner self,
Revealing the state of heart.
Whether you know it or not,
Whether you mean or care,
Gentleness, kindness, love and hate,
Envy, anger are there.
Then, would you quarrels avoid
And peace and love rejoice?
Keep anger not only out of your words—
Keep it out of your voice.
We all know how our tone of voice can dramatically affect our relationships with others. If we say something “the wrong way” (not so much our choice of words but rather they way we say it), we can deeply hurt someone and damage our relationship with them. That’s why, especially in delicate situations, we take care with our words and soften our tone of voice.
But what tone of voice to we use with ourselves—the tone we use in our self-talk?
Your homework today is to be mindful of not only the words you use with your self-talk but also pay particular attention to the tone in which you say them.
Make sure your words to yourself are supportive and encouraging and that you say them in a tone that conveys love and caring.
Even if you find that from time-to-time you need to speak firmly to yourself—for instance, you need to buckle down and get to work—do so in a tone that conveys confidence in yourself to do the right thing and follow through and that you believe in your value and worth.
You can do it!
I’m so proud of you!
Your Friend and Pep Pal,