Career Advice

Certain Words You Use At Work That Might Be Holding You Back

In a work environment, we all know how the importance of communication can not be overemphasized at all. In your resume or your professional equipment pack, communication is always considered a necessary feature of our professional life regardless of your personality as an introvert or an extrovert.

Communication in this sense applies not only to you conversing with someone, it also covers listening and the ability to be concise, but regardless of speaking or the use of actual words is key to communication.

So this brings us to the importance of word selection considering the type of environment you probably find yourself in, and the effects or implications of certain words in holding you down. Your choice of words actually says a lot about your experiences, how much of an expert in that role you are, and it says a lot about your confidence.

All of these are what builds perceptions and opinions of other colleagues about us at work. Majorly be careful of the kind of word that you use, especially any word that perhaps makes you sound void of confidence or morale at the same time.

So here are some particular words we utter unknowingly at work and how they could be sending the wrong notion of lack of confidence. Constant use of these particular words in written or unwritten forms of communications should be taken note of and avoided as much as possible. 

The use of the word “JUST”

To have a proper understanding of what the word just means in this context. The word just in this context is not the kind that fits into a sentence like I just got home, instead the type of just that most people use in statements like I just thought it was possible, I just felt it was not important, I just forgot, I just wanted to do.

The application of the word just in these types of manner or forms, to temper with any bit of information that comes from any communication, signals a lack of confidence to whoever you are addressing at that point.

What we probably don’t know is that nothing needs to fill in the place of just in these types of sentences, instead you can remove the word just and the statement can almost stand perfectly on its own.

For example, I JUST did it is definitely not confident enough unlike I did it. The removal of the word JUST would actually reveal other unnecessary words or phrases that follow it.

The use of “I THINK” 

There is practically not a lot of difference between just and I think, if you carefully think about it. I think as well as Just shows how timid and unsure of the next words that accompany it.

The use of I THINK clearly devalues and definitely does not speak well of your experiences and expertise behind your words. It simply means your statement is probably still a figment of your imagination or if it is simply only a mere thought and not an evidence-based contribution or a feasible or physical implementation.

You are probably confused already on what to use instead of the use of I THINK. Don’t be. You don’t entirely have to exclude the use of I THINK in all your conversations, especially on the conversations that answer questions or inquiries about your thoughts on certain issues.

Like the solution to the use of JUST is just to likewise remove the I THINK as the statement would still make sense and definitely flaunt your experience and expertise at the same time.

The use of “ACTUALLY”

Normally or let’s say grammatically, the use of actually is usually for anything that has to do with surprises. For example, the footballer actually scored a volley. The use of the word ACTUALLY, simply sends the signal that the statement you are about to make or perhaps the fact that you even have something to say is surprising.

While this is definitely not the sort of impression you want to give. The best thing to do is silently check if the statement makes sense after the removal of actually and if it does not, then it’s best you rephrase or rearrange the words or statements into a more meaningful and less surprised statement. 

The use of the word “SORRY”

Don’t get it all wrong, it is very okay and very professional to accept responsibility and mistakes and you apologize about it, sorry in this context is for individuals that use sorry for an unapologetic statement or as a reflex or they say it subconsciously.

When you are always apologizing or using apologetic statements at work it portrays you as someone who probably lacks understanding of your role in certain situations. Obviously when everyone at work is used to you saying sorry, when it becomes a genuine or sincere apology, it is taken as the normal random statements with sorry. 

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