Words get thrown around a lot. They can be as harmful as a physical blow to the face. Then why do we continue to misuse and abuse them? Flinging them at each other with little care? I learned the effects of this misuse the hard way by saying something I should’ve simply kept to myself, in an attempt to just say what was on my mind. After hurting a few feelings, and ruining a friendship or two, I realized I’d have to make a change. So, I came up with an ‘imaginary punching bag’. I pictured how my words, in the form of a strike on this bag, would affect someone. What it allowed me to do was foresee the physical impact of what I was about to say, and the probable consequences of those words. Even if you are not someone like me, sputtering thoughts out at random, you should always consider with diligence the words you use, just as you would the physical interactions you have with strangers and friends. Since beginning this experiment, I’ve had a few people who, upon meeting me for the first time, have described me quiet and pensive. Perhaps thinking before you speak isn’t such a bad thing after all. And avoiding a black eye and a few bruised ribs ain’t so bad either, right?