I’ve probably said this one too many times, that the words you say (and think) are critical to the success of your life – and that’s because it’s the truth!
I’m no master at this, but I’m definitely working on it. Why? Because I want to have a successful life dammit; and this usually relies on the success of your relationships (all kinds of relationships). So needless to say, I’m a little interested in the topic of cultivating them properly. And the ability to express ourselves and be heard (and of course, to listen too), is one of the best steps towards that.
So we’ve covered that it’s important to explain why you want or think something, and that it’s important to do so as objectively as possible – but we haven’t covered the language that you want to avoid when doing so.
Some of the first examples that come to mind are words like, “you always”, or “you never”. These are sure fire starters – but if that’s what you’re going for, you’re on the right path darling. But if you’re tryna fight that fire (and I hope you are), avoid saying these two things all together. ALWAYS is a big word (maybe not in size, but in meaning); it implies “every single time”, since this person has existed on this planet or at the very least, in your life. And simply put, it’s one of those words that puts people off and takes away from your credibility – even if you’re saying it in a positive light. Same thing goes for never – has the person really NEVER done that thing you want? And can you really say that you’ve NEVER done so and so? Save that word for the rare occasions where it truly applies. And in the meantime, try saying “you sometimes” – it leaves a lot more room for interpretation and makes it easier to believe and agree with.
Another one that comes to mind is saying “I’m mad” or “it makes me mad”; if I may suggest replacing mad with the word upset instead. It’s a lot gentler and easy on the ears.
I’ve also said this before, about eliminating the word “just” before something you want to express. You don’t “just want to tell them something” – you want to tell them something. Be clear about your intention. The word “just” in this scenario implies weakness and unsureness – and if the point is to communicate for the sake of influencing or persuading, you’re really doing yourself a huge disservice.
There are so many, too many, examples of the ways our language affects how we express ourselves and how we are heard. The point is to know that this is true, and to consciously make an effort to get better.
…That’s if you want to be heard, of course.
Peace, love and expressive language,