10 Words You Should Remove From Your Vocabulary


There are so many words (and so many different reasons) that should be removed from any reasonable persons vocabulary. The words I am taking out of my vocabulary today are words that come across as non-committal, weak, or indecisive. The reason I am going to drop these words from my roster is because I always want to present myself
as a confidant person. I personally believe that before I expect others to have some confidence in me, I have to have some confidence in myself first. Here is an easy start:

#1: Need

There are correct ways to use this word, but I more often hear this word being misused. “I need to go get some gas.” is an example of the proper use of word #1. When I hear things like “I need those new shoes.” it makes me cringe. The word that should be used is “want” (neither here nor there right now) because “need” implies that you will not be satisfied unless you get the “need” fulfilled. I am a big proponent of “if you want to be happy, then be happy.” I am learning to put my inward happiness ahead of momentary material happiness. I don’t need anything to be happy, and we all should have the same way of thinking.

NOT GOOD= “I need to get some coffee.”
GOOD= “I sure could go for some coffee”

#2: Quandary

Quandary is a really silly word. Being in a quandary is not where anyone wants to be but we have all found ourselves stuck between a rock and a hard place at some point. There is nothing wrong with being in a quandary, however I have decided that I rather put a positive spin on any tough choices I will be making.

NOT GOOD= “I have a bit of a quandary.”
GOOD= “I am still weighing my options.”

#3: Likely

The thing that most of the words on this list have in common is that they are neither yes or no! The reason that these words should be removed from our vocabulary is because they are of little value when used. If you are doing the weather and are talking about the chances of rain tomorrow then “likely” is a perfect word for the situation. When a friend ask you if you’ll be able to make it to their party “most likely” is a bad response. Let your yes be yes and your no be no.

NOT GOOD= “I will likely make it on time.”
GOOD= “I will be there.”

#4: Worried

Being worried is the result of a lack of confidence and possibly a lack of preparation as well. There are a lot of things to worry about but worrying about something has never changed the outcome. So it stands to reason if you are that worried about anything, do something about it! Worry is not only a word that we should never use, it is also something we should never do!

NOT GOOD= “I am worried about my friend.”
GOOD= “I have been thinking about my friend let me call her.”

#5: Suspect

Unless you are a police officer referring to a possible perpetrator then you find another word to replace “suspect”. If you suspect your spouse is cheating on you then do something other than “suspect”. If you “suspect” something and are not sure how you should approach the situation, that might be because it is none of your business to begin with.

Most times if you don’t have evidence then all you can do is suspect. So it is implied once you present a problem without a possible culprit.

NOT GOOD= “I suspect someone is stealing.”
GOOD= “Someone is stealing.”

#6: Impossible

Viewing things as impossible is setting yourself up for failure. The word “impossible” means something can not be done, people use “impossible” when they really mean “difficult”. What bothers me most about this word is how often it is misused secondly things are only impossible until they are done.

NOT GOOD= “It is impossible to reach customer service.”
GOOD= “This might take awhile.”

#7: Confused

Being confused is something that can be easily fixed by asking a few questions. If you are too shy to ask questions then GET OVER IT! If you are confused about something work related then ask a co-worker, if you are confused about something at school then ask a teacher. The only reason to remain confused is because you want to be.

NOT GOOD= “I thought yesterday was Sunday, I’m confused.”
GOOD= “Let me see a calendar.”

#8: Usually

Usually is a word I use often, so I know how misleading it can be. When someone asks a question they are trying to get information in return. When someone asks “Where does ______ belong?” the objective is to understand where [blank] belongs. A reply that has “usually” somewhere in there implies (a) most times [blank] would go there but this time is different or (b) [blank] used to go there but currently we are undergoing changes and that might no longer be the case. The only time “usually” would be appropriate is if the question was “Where does _____ usually belong?” “usually” is a wasted word. If you use “usually” try restating the same sentence without “usually” and it is the same sentence.

NOT GOOD= “I usually go to bed at eleven.”
GOOD= “I go to bed at eleven.”

#9: Won’t

I have had to work in teams from time to time in order to complete a task. The most annoying thing about working with some people is the whole “that won’t work” attitude. If something won’t work that is ok, but don’t be the one who just lives to point out flaws. I prefer solutions, so if something won’t work explain why and present a solution.

Of course there are times when “won’t” is fitting (i.e. “I won’t be able to make it in today.”) using the right word at the right time makes all the difference.

NOT GOOD= “That won’t work.”
BETTER= “This will work better.”

#10: Might/Maybe

Get off the fence! Either you are are you aren’t, might/maybe is not an answer. Getting back to letting your “yes” be “yes” and your “no” be “no” might/maybe is neither. If you are unsure then say that! If plans are contingent upon other factors, then it is ok to say “It is up in the air because _______.” , but if you know that your answer is “no” then say “no”. Might/maybe is used most often when people just don’t want to say “no”. Say it! I love saying “no”, sometimes I’ll say “no” before I hear the question (that’s not good either, but the point is being comfortable with saying “no”)

The bottom line is: Be decisive!

NOT GOOD= “I might not be avaliable.”
GOOD= “I will be unavailable.”

The words are this list are words that exist and are in the dictionary, the problem is that these words are often misused. To be able to communicate your ideas properly it helps to say what you mean and mean what you say. Don’t say “maybe” when you KNOW you can or can’t. If you suspect some wrong doing then either do something about it or find another use for your spare time. Being “worried” about something is natural at times, but if you are truly “worried” then do something about it! Stop saying you “need” something when you mean “want”. Being decisive not only makes you more reliable, it also makes what you say worth listening to.

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