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Words to Eliminate from Your Vocabulary

By Consuelo (Chit) E. Munar
Words are powerful.  They shape our thoughts, they determine our actions and they chart the course of our lives.  Whether the words we use are positive – giving hope and encouragement, or negative utterances that steal our joy and confidence, the impact is great. Whatever and wherever we are in our lives, careers or personal relationships, the words we use consistently are partly responsible. So we must be more aware of our words.  To change them when needed, we can begin to  get our desired results.

Using some of the following words far too often  result the favorable situation we tend to seek:

1.  Can’t –  completely eliminate use of this word as it is primarily responsible for countless hopes and dreams lying dormant on the “drawing boards” of our lives. Significant positive change in life  shifts  as a result of this action.

2.  Should – any statement that uses the word “should” generally elicits guilt.  ”I should go to the gym,” makes you feel guilty for not going. Replacing this word with “choose” as in , “I choose to go to the gym, or I choose not to  go to the gym today.”

3. Maybe – this word indicates indecision, doubt or uncertainty as to a course of action. For  example, Maybe I’d better wait to …”

For those of us interested in personal development, “maybe” should be used very sparingly.  Use “I will” or “I will not” instead of maybe.  Mere sound of the more positive words emits feelings of confidence and resolve which are so important to our personal well-being.

4. If – this is a small word that carries large doubts and uncertainties.  When it’s used often, it  robs away our confidence and intended actions, two qualities necessary for any type of success.

5. Try or (I’ll Try) – replace  ”I’ll try” with  ”I will.” Each time  someone says these words or when used in conversation with others, whatever the subject of “I’ll try,” rarely gets done.

6. Never – this word is absolute.  There are only limited situations when ” never” is absolutely true. The use of this word suggests a closed mind which seriously hinders our self-growth efforts.. The word ” never” should be replaced with a non-absolute term.

7. Won’t – the word “won’t” implies an unwillingness, reluctance, or closed minded ness, and like the absolute term ” never,” it is quite harmful because it closes the door on many of the actions we need to take to reach our goals.

8. Someday – like soon or later, someday,is much too indefinite, and when it is used, it shows the same lack of commitment.  Replace “someday” with a specific date and time.

9. Soon or later – both are indefinite references to time. They are also non-committal.  They should be replaced with a definite time and date.  When someone says he/she is going to do something ” soon” or ” later,” there is no way to determine when whatever it is will get done.  Imagine what could happen to deadlines and your integrity when these words are used frequently.

10. But – when used as a conjunction, ” but” negates whatever statement that precedes it.  ”I want to study law, but it will take a lot of hard work.”  Your mind does not focus on your desire to become a lawyer; it only sees the hard work you will need to perform.  Replace ” but” with “and.”

These words must be given serious thought before we use them in our “self-talk” or in the conversations we have with others.  Our words affect our thoughts, our actions, our very lives, and because of their power, we must choose them with the most utmost care.


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