Are the words you use diminishing your confidence?

The words you use, both out loud and in your head can affect your energy, your mood and your confidence.

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The words and phrases we use everyday can be subliminally depleting your confidence and cause others to have less confidence in you. Our vocabularly and how we speak to ourselves and others is something we learn in school but also by listening to all the people around us as children and even into adulthood. You may not even realise the impact some of the words you use are having on you.

If you want to appear confident, feel more motivated and positive, start noticing your words and think about the message they may be sending. Here are 5 words or phrases you might want to consider changing.

1 “I should” –  if you are saying this then you are not committing or not wanting to do whatever is at the end of the sentence.  “I should walk the dog.” You either want to walk the dog or you don’t. You are either going to walk the dog or you are not. You either need to or you don’t. Make a decision and do it, there is no “should” about it.

2. “Yes and No” – when you want to say the opposite. We’ve all done it. Said yes to something you really want to say no to. And said no to something you really wanted to say yes to. The result, the word comes out weak and hesitant or with a lot of excuses to back it up. Say what you mean, make the decision and answer. When the answer is right for you, there is no need to back it up with reasons.

3. “I can’t” – Yes you can. If you want to do something you can do it. “I can’t” is usually a soft way of saying “I won’t” or “I don’t want to.”  Or the word “can’t” often disguises the thought of, “perhaps I can, but I’m not sure.”

4. “I don’t know.” When you do know! “What do you want for dinner?”, “I don’t know.” When you are actually craving a quarter pounder special. This phrase tells others you are undecisive or afraid to voice your thoughts.

5. “I’ll try my best” – really says “I don’t think I’m good enough” or ‘I don’t think I am capable.” When you tell yourself you will try your best, you are putting yourself down before you’ve started.

When you say any of these things, you are coming from a place of self doubt, of unworthiness or fear. This can then be reflected in how other people see you. Just by changing some of the words you use, you automatically become more assertive, feel more confident, and will be viewed in the same way.

Some examples:

When you’ve been invited to the movies but all you want to do is curl up with a good book.

“I can’t make it tonight. I’m working, late and then by the time I get home, it will be too much of a rush.”


“Thanks for asking me, but I won’t make it tonight. Let me know when you are going again.”

You have been handed a piece of work with a very short deadline.

“I’ll try my best to get this done, but there’s a lot to do, and that’s not really enough time.”


“I’ll do my best to meet the deadline.”

You can feel the difference in the energy between the different phrases. You feel more empowered, self assured, in control of the situation.

Notice what words you are using, are they self-destructing. Are you putting yourself down, diminishing your confidence? You get to choose how you show up every day. Choose your words carefully, they represent you and you want to be the very best version of you.

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