"How do I love thee let me count the ways." The poetic language of Elizabeth Barrett Browning matched her husband's Robert Browning, and they had a long and happy marriage. In contrast, Sylvia Plath's and Ted Hughes' styles were not in sync and their relationship ended tragically. A new study from the University of Texas claims that when you are happy, you mimic the speaking and writing style of your beloved, a colleague or friend. When your styles don't match, watch out for the downward spiral. Language style matching is automatic - unless you do it intentionally for the purpose of manipulation.
James Pennebaker, psychology professor and co-author of this study explains, "When two people start a conversation, they usually begin talking alike within a matter of seconds. This also happens when people read a book or watch a movie. As soon as the credits roll, they find themselves talking like the author or the central characters." So, if you are a business rival or involved in a love relationship, taking an objective look at language style can provide clues or serve as a crystal ball about the future of this relationship according to Pennebaker.
You might need to consult an English teacher. Our verbiage is powerful, shaping perception. For example, when women say, "I'm crazy busy," busyness will become the reality as their to-do lists inevitably keep growing. When any of us say, I'm so bored," boredom will rule the day, blind to any potential novelty. Many people who anticipate disaster at family gatherings actually trigger bitter family feuds because of their subconscious self-fulfilling prophecy - using words that push a person's buttons.
I'm not suggesting that you recite affirmations; anyway affirmations don't work if you don't believe them. Nor, do you need to write poetry or start pretending and lying to people.
While mismatched styles provide a barometer for breakups, perhaps re-mimicking someone's style will get it back on track. You might be able to improve your current faltering relationships (if you wish to) with more optimistic word choices like when you were initially happy and excited to be with them:
* Speak kindly
* Filter out the bad voices in your head to listen to the good ones. Your focus becomes what you pay attention to
* Use an inspiring quote as a screensaver ; change it periodically
* Count your words and make them count
More From Intent.com: