Performance coach, Guerrilla Consultant, interim executive. Technophile re: IoT, Smart Cities, Life Hacking & more. AmieDevero.com for free consult.
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August 22, 2016
Does anyone listen to you as though your words could move worlds? In our lives, we use our
language loosely. When you hear a friend suggest she will stop smoking, or a colleague say
he wants to start exercising, or when you yourself mention undertaking a new project, how
do you hear those pronouncements? Are they sweet nothings that tumble out and evaporate
like soap blown through plastic rings into fragile, floating bubbles? Or are they near certain
predictions because of the weight with which they are spoken and meant? We live in a
culture of empty speech. Our utterances are often no more deliberately meant or received
than Pokemon images superimposed on the screens of our phones. Even in those few
moments when we hope to change something significant, we are weak in bringing our words
into reality – just 60 days after making a New Year’s resolution, 90% have both failed and
are forgotten. And those are the things we really want to change and do.
There is an alternative paradigm, one of
profound integrity, where words create new realities. We don’t experience much of that. One
place that we see it is at the altar on the day of marriage. As the officiant makes the final
declaration, that the bride and groom ARE now husband and wife, they become so. In that
instant, something fundamental shifts. I have interviewed a lot of married couples about that
moment. They all report that they felt something change. It was as though their very
molecules altered, and they experienced their partner differently and the bond between them
differently. They became family. This is a legal reality, yes – but more importantly, it is an
ontological reality; that is, it actually changes something about who they
are. Pronouncements that change reality are expressions of profound integrity. “You are
married” does not just describe something, it creates it.
This sounds heavy – and in a way it is. The idea of profound integrity has philosophical
roots. Wittgenstein describ