11 Phrases Strong, Badass Women Should Eliminate From Their Vocabularies

You guys, we have a problem. I’m so freaking sick of seeing and hearing capable, badass ladies expressing themselves in such a way that undermines their abilities and their confidence. I’m guilty of it too, and it makes me cringe every time I catch myself using one of these phrases. Let’s agree to just not do that anymore, OK? 

“Like…”

Unless you seriously don’t give a damn about whether or not the person you’re speaking to takes you seriously, stay away from using “like” as a filler. Nothing drags down the quality of your communication like this Valley Girl throwback. We know it, yet we continue to say it. Let’s, like, stop.

“I think…”

Newsflash: nobody ever says anything that they didn’t think first. It goes without saying that if you’re bothering to say something, you think it. Starting your sentences with these two words discounts the validity of the thought that follows and acts as a way to separate yourself from your statement. No. If you have something worth saying, own it.

“…if that’s OK with you.”

I’m not saying you shouldn’t be conscientious of others’ feelings, but if you find yourself finishing your sentences (or, if you’re anything like me, your emails) with this phrase, it might be worthwhile to figure out why. When you say this, it basically puts the final decision about whatever you’re proposing in the other person’s court. Make the choice and cut out this wishy-washy statement.

“Does that make sense?”

You’re a smart woman—if you weren’t, you wouldn’t be reading this and trying to better yourself! When you end a well-thought statement like this, it comes off as unsure of your ability to communicate. Just assume that you’re making perfect sense unless you’re asked to clarify.

“I just…”

Unless you JUST want to belittle everything you’re about to say, cut this sneaky word out of your vocab (in this context, obvs). You’re not inferior to anyone, and adding this qualifier to your sentences drastically reduces the punch your statement could potentially pack. Drop “just” like a bad habit, and you’ll immediately start to sound more confident, credible, and professional.

“Thanks! :)”

When was the last time you got an email from a male colleague that ended this way? I never have and you probably haven’t either. We end our emails like this to make sure we come off as non-confrontational as possible. Women are taught every day that they should be less bossy and aggressive, which is totally contradictory to how men are programmed to function in society and the workplace. I’m over it.

“What if we…”

This is such a passive way to throw an idea out there, ladies. This is the “I think” of brainstorming.  When you start a sentence like this, it comes off as essentially polling everyone around you to find out how terrible they think your idea is. You’re not dumb; you’re a smart, capable badass. Your ideas will reflect that. Plus, even if it’s not your best one ever, who cares? At least you had the confidence to speak up.

“I’m different from other girls.”

When you say this, you’re committing a misdemeanor against other women. I get that you’re trying to highlight your individuality but this statement is such a disservice to all of the incredible women out there. You’re awesome and so are other women. Let’s empower each other and be queens together.

“I’m sorry…”

I don’t mean offering a sincere apology when you’ve done something wrong (which is a badass skill we should all make a point to master). I’m talking about the chronic problem women in our society have overusing the word “sorry.” We’re constantly apologizing for our very existence and we act like we’re grateful to even be tolerated by those around us. Let’s collectively agree to stop being so effing sorry for everything and focus on phrasing our needs in a way that actually validates them.

“That’s OK.”

If I had a nickel for every time I’ve said something was OK that was actually super not OK, I’d be writing this blog post while sipping a fruity beverage from a coconut under a cabana in Cancun. Can we stop saying that everything is OK when it very clearly isn’t? You’re entitled to your feelings, and if someone makes you feel like crap, you should absolutely call them out. We’re guilty of this at work, in relationships, even with strangers at the grocery store. Let’s just stop.

“Honestly…”

When a person starts a sentence like this, I can’t help but wonder what it implies about everything else they’ve ever said to me. It’s a filler word that needlessly justifies the fact that you have feelings, and manages to come off as both ditzy and disingenuous. Let’s just assume that every statement is honest, and base our trust on whether or not they start their sentence with the word “honestly.”

 

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