It’s kind of ironic how phrases that once provided inspiration, strength and courage change. Their inspiring impact fades. Suddenly, that once inspirational quote or statement causes a lump to rise up in the back of the throat. Then the day arrives. You think, “If I hear it just one more time, I’ll go ballistic and wail someone with a bar stool.”

Is it the redundancy? The deliverers lack of genuine concern? Or the evolution of personal growth? Time heals to an extent, but like any change, situations progress, the mind adapts, and life continues. So why do these phrases all of a sudden seem so hard to swallow?

It could be said by someone trying to express genuine concern but when uttered by others, the same phrase comes off as superficial. But then again, when told by those who have not experienced the “situation.” the phrase invokes another level of angst. Yet, there are others who seem to have heard the phrase so much they say it as a conditioned response, their “go to” phrase, if you will. Similar to an empty “Hello” or distant “Good-bye.” An automated response taught from the time one could speak.

What I’m trying to say is this, if a person hasn’t taken the time to know you or has never experienced what situation you are personally going through. For example: domestic abuse, rape, homelessness, addiction or another specific “situation,” then how can they sincerely say things like…

God only gives you what you can handle…

You got this…

Live and let live…

Get over it…

This won’t last forever…

It is what it is…

Here’s the thing, we’ve all been told these phrases over and over. Their initial intention to reassure, encourage, and inspire has been canceled out or diminished by their repetitive use. The phrase now brings new unsettling and uncomfortable feelings. Questions arise while certain doubts of sincerity plague the mind. We question; the deliverer’s sincerity, if they genuinely care about our health or our wellbeing, or is it because they just couldn’t find the words?

It’s the two headed snake. A sort-of love hate relationship. In the end, expressing one of these phrases could be causing more harm than good -you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

Over time, these clichés will morph into oblivion or be replaced by newer ones. However, their overuse and wave of redundancy has eroded the patience, tolerance and expectation of relief from the sufferer. The comfort these phrases once brought gone. Therefore, I say to the afflicted, the aggravated, and to the sufferer.  Next time one of these phrases are thrown at you and before you burst into flames. Ask yourself a few simple questions…

  1. Why am I feeling hostile?
  2. Do I have an issue with the deliverer?
  3. Does the person speaking know me well?
  4. Has this person been through my specific situation?
  5. Is the deliverer acting concerned or superficial?

Or better yet, ask… Have I moved on? Have I processed the situation past the use of a specific phrase? You need to be totally honest and dig in deep. Maybe you’re angry because your pride is threatened by the seemingly “all together” preacher of the words. Nevertheless, YOU are the one uncomfortable! YOU are affected, and YOU are the only one who needs to hush the gnawing claws closing your throat.

You can handle life…steam ahead…Let go & get better…this doesn’t have you…emotions are temporary…Your life is what you make it! One goal at a time!


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