Words have power. They create meaning, communicate ideas, and ultimately shape our reality. They can strengthen your message but also diminish your credibility if you are not careful, especially when using minimizing language.
Minimizing language can make us seem unconfident or unsure of ourselves. It can have serious implications for communication since it may lead our audience to distrust us or not buy into our message.
Let your confidence and knowledge shine through by implementing the following strategies
1. Eliminate qualifers
such as “Just, Sort of, or A little” that can undermine your expertise.
2. Avoid filler words like
“You know, Right, or Umm”
3. Use positive language.
Instead of saying, “I can’t do that” try replacing it with “I will give it a try and see what I come up with”.
4. Avoid self-depracating language
such as “This might sound silly, I’m not sure this will make sense or I’m not an expert but”. Own what you say, don’t minimize it!
5. Don’t apologize unnecessarily.
Instead of, “I’m sorry for taking up your time, this won’t take long,” try, “Thank you for finding the time to meet”.
They say the first step toward change is awareness, so try taking stock of the language you’re using to see if it’s helping or hindering you.