7 Common Phrases That Make You Sound Weak

Aug 10, 2020

You sit and watch the leaders in your office look and sound strong and confident. You envy them and wonder if you deserve to sound like a leader. But no one notices you. Even that new coworker feels totally confident in the workplace. And now here you are, trying to make others respect your ideas and work.

It does not seem fair, but you still believe others will listen to you. If this sounds familiar to you, then you have come to the right place. The words and phrases you use in your daily life are actually key to sounding strong and confident. And here are the most common phrases that make you sound weak.

1 I will try

Saying someone “I will try to do it” automatically makes you sound unconfident. I remember making this mistake when I started my career path. My boss gave me an important project and asked me to accomplish it overnight. Even though I knew I would do it faster, I ended up saying, “I will try.” It made my boss think that I would not accomplish the project and he did not expect me to do it at all.

More: 5 Simple Tricks to Gain Quality and Depth in Each Conversation

The phrase “I will try” means nothing. It just gives hope and increases the possibility of failure. No one will trust your word if you say “I will try” every time people ask you to do something. Try to eliminate the word “try” from your office vocabulary if you are going to become a leader.

2 I am not sure

  • – Are you ready for a new promotion?
  • – I am not sure. (even though you are sure you deserve that promotion)
  • – Will you attend the office party tonight?
  • – Not sure.

Does the answer sound confident to you? Sometimes we do not notice what we say. We often answer “Not sure” when we are sure because we do not want to offend anyone.

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Just because you got a promotion and your best office friend didn’t, does not mean you should feel ashamed. If you do not want to attend that party, be honest and let others know that you are confident of your wishes and desires.

3 I believe or I think

I am guilty of using these two phrases in my daily life and do my best to eliminate them from my office vocabulary. There is a reason for it. Think for a few seconds and please tell me what sounds more confident:

  • “I think/I believe I will get that interview.”
  • “I am confident that I am smart enough to get that interview.”

The answer is obvious. Both sentences have the same meaning but they sound differently. So, if you do not want to sound insecure, reconsider your speaking skills and remove weak words from your vocabulary. The same goes for perhaps, maybe, and probably.

More: Fake It till You Make It: How to Look Confident Each Day

4 One day

  • “One day, I will become a popular singer.”
  • “One day, I will be rich and happy.”
  • “One day, I will find my soulmate.”

Surely, these things will happen one day, but if you remove the phase from the sentences, they will sound profoundly different and more confident – not only to others but to yourself as well. The phrase ‘one day’ does not radiate confidence, after all.

5 Never, ever

There is nothing impossible in life so do not say that something never ever happens. You have no clue what will happen in the future. Regardless of the situation, do not tell or promise that something will never ever happen again, especially if you are not sure of it.

6 I feel

  • “I feel he will not accomplish that project.”
  • “I feel we should not change anything.”

Your ‘feeling’ is important, but your employer does not care about it. They want to hear your confident statement, not your guess-work. Leaders do not use this phrase at work because they know it makes them sound and look weak. Take it as an example.

More: 10 Ways to Develop High Self-Esteem

7 I hope

Similar to the phrases mentioned above. The phrase stimulates unsureness and doubt. The phrase means nothing so it is the last phrase you want to use at work. You want to sound decisive and look confident, so watch what you say.

These phrases are not easy to eliminate from our daily life. We use them each day and sometimes without noticing what we say. However, if you strive to become a leader, the last thing you want is to look and sound weak.

Improve your speaking skills and others will listen to you and respect what you say. What are the phrases you wish you removed from your vocabulary? Are you ready to take a challenge?