"Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me". That's bullshit! An absolute bullshit! Whoever wrote this didn't have a clue.
I concur with Robert Fulghum, US author and Unitarian clergyman, who said, "Sticks and stones will break our bones, but words will break our hearts..." Many of us are getting the sticks and stones of life now because of the pain of words ill-spoken.
I have a theory. If you have to "prove" something, then something inside of you is undecided about your value. At a deep level, you aren't sure if you are worthy. However, instead of facing your pain, you seek to achieve something to prove you're okay. The hurting words are no longer outside of you, but are inside your head taunting you, bullying you, criticizing you. You've become your own abuser.
I remember the pain of words spoken. When you are being accused of something that you are not. Hey, I am not the bad person you are making me out to be, okay? I don't like to be made a failure. I will not let your words hurt me. I am not going to be blinded by your pain and let you harm me. I am not going to internalize your damaging words into my life. Truth sets me free. Truth spoke to my heart and reminded me of who I am and how irrefutably valuable I am. I am all ready to heal.