In their words: Nkandu Beltz & Words have power - Happy + Well : Happy + Well

In their words: Nkandu Beltz & Words have power

Written by on August 19, 2015 in Happiness, Relationships, Young People with 0 Comments

images-4When I was young I was told that “of all the talents that God has given us, the power of speech is the most important gift” and that it should be delicately cultivated.

There is no other greater talent than this. Words are such a powerful tool, they can break a heart and destroy a person’s self esteem forever, or they can build someone to greatness.

Last Saturday I was going through Facebook, and saw a post by my little cousin that made it clear she was very upset. I immediately called her at her boarding school in Zambia to ask what was happening. She told me she was bothered by the words her peers had said to her; they’d asked her to leave a photo session because she was too dark and would spoil the photo. At first I could not believe how anyone could have the audacity to say such mean words but then I remembered the battleground of high school.

My cousin is beautiful in every way with a gorgeous smile and big bright eyes. She lights up the room when she walks in, and she is always smiling. Yes, she has darker skin than most people but I see nothing wrong with that. I remember when she was a child and she would say funny things to make everyone laugh. It made me sad to think how upset she was now because of what others said about her skin color.

I asked her to write down one hundred things she likes about herself, no matter how long it took. I also told her to thank God for those “mean girls” as they are helping to build her character.

We never become stronger by sleeping in a garden full of roses and sunshine. We become stronger through hardship and adversity. The fact is this: people will always say something about you, made up or otherwise. And they usually do this because they’re insecure. They’re just projecting their neuroses onto you!

My point is, try your best not to be affected by other people’s words. It’s not an easy thing to do. But it’s possible. You just have to remember that you are unique and beautiful just the way you are, and there’s no need to compare yourself with others. You have your own talents and qualities that help you contribute to the world. Celebrate these and be grateful for who you are, and all that you have including those people in your life who love you unconditionally. Oprah says, “The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is to celebrate”. Here’s to celebrating you!

Just as other people can hurt us with their words, so too can we hurt them with ours. Break the cycle of cause and effect and consciously decide to compliment others around you whenever you can. Believe me, speaking with kindness can make such a difference to someone’s day. I love this quote by Han Suyin: “There is nothing stronger in the world than gentleness”.

Be gentle with your words.


Nkandu Beltz is a philanthropist, social change maker and author of I have the Power: Unlocking Your Potential to Change the World. She is presenting at Mind & Its Potential 2015. For more information and to register, please click here.

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