I’ve banished these four words

should⟡ I think you should… ⟡

I have become positively allergic to this phrase:  “I think you should.” After years of giving advice as I was raising my children and in my career with my employees…now, whenever I hear this phrase popping up in my mouth I bite my tongue.

I say instead:  What are your options?  What do you want to do?  What are the consequences of this?  What is the worst case scenario?

I say:  You could…  or  How about?  or  Why don’t you?

These are all more open minded and empowering to the person receiving your information.

Are there any words you’ve banished from your vocabulary?

xo Liza

P.S.  A short post…because…it’s August!

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7 thoughts on “I’ve banished these four words

  1. One of the most liberating notions that (finally!) occurred to me was that I didn’t have to give anyone advice of any kind, ever. For some reason, I used to feel compelled to get involved in the analysis of other people’s problems. Now, if I’ve really been backed into a corner, I just say, “Well, think carefully about what your options are and do whatever you think works best for you.” A total cop out, possibly, but also one which leaves me no lingering guilt. At least for me, this topic is very related to Liza’s recent “Wanting to Please” blog.

  2. Great concept Liza! And Chloe yours is absolutely brilliant as well. Thank you both. We can combine all of the info from this week into “I’m too old to give advice or be a people-pleaser anymore!”

  3. For me it’s the word ‘just’ – especially in the workplace, ‘I was just wondering if you could …’, ‘I’m just writing to …’ It immediately places you in a position of weakness where you’re almost apologising in advance. So many females do this. My emails and interactions have become much firmer and clearer since I’ve consciously removed this and other similar words. Women need to be empowered to say what they mean and be OK with sounding firm, whether others like it or not.

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