The author presents a theoretical model to understand why words affect individuals by suggesting that words color emotions, shape behaviors, and influence physiological functioning to create an overall impact (whether positive or negative). Drawing upon several scientific studies, this book will help the reader understand why words are spoken and unspoken forces that have the potential to shape the future.
My inner nerd was in seventh heaven with this book. I am always talking to people about the power of words. I try to be careful when choosing mine, because semantics matter. Just because two words have similar definitions or are synonyms doesn't mean that one word isn't better than the other.
I have personally witnessed the power of words in healing or harming the sick and dying. I remember telling doctors, nurses, friends, and family members that I would not discuss my father's condition near him, even when he was in a coma. I didn't want him to hear any negatives. Saleem backs up this idea, and many others, with a plethora of research studies.
I teach young children, so I see on a daily basis how my words can deeply affect a little one's psyche or quickly cause a misunderstanding. I can build him up or tear her down in a heartbeat. I prefer to do the former.
I was intrigued by the mix of science, religion, psychology, and philosophy, all rolled into one book. Saleem uses published research studies along with the beliefs of several religious groups to demonstrate how the power of words has been studied and used for centuries. She discusses Cognitive Behavior Therapy, which I believe is a powerful tool for helping people to change their outlook on life. All of this is done in a manner that is easy to read and is very interesting, while also demonstrating some extensive research on her part. If I were teaching in older grades, I would definitely be having my students read this! For the rest of us, I recommend this as a launchpad for starting to reshape your own thoughts and life.