Self-awareness is the ability to self-analyze and recognize oneself as an individual. It’s the ability to understand your emotions, personality, values, and needs. Higher self-awareness helps people seek out endeavors they enjoy and engage in fun and lasting relationships.

Simply put, higher self-awareness helps us get the most out of life.

Awareness regarding the language you use can also help elevate your game. The ability to communicate, effectively and with style, will set you and your teens apart.

There are a few suggested variables to being effective with language. Unless you’re in an artistic mode that calls for vague or abstract prose, you should,

  • be concrete and specific with your language,
  • be concise, precise and clear,
  • focus on being constructive and always make sure you use the appropriate level of formality,
  • avoid filler words and phrases.

Every generation of adults and teens have their fair share of catch-phrases and buzzwords. With communication moving at the speed of light through the use of technology and social media, the current overused words and phrases have spread like a pandemic. Here are a few that have reached the saturation point:

“If you will” – nothing more than a hedge phrase. The grown up equivalent of ‘like’.
“It is what it is” – luckily, this one seems to be less popular these days. There is a particularly excellent rant found on The Military Leaders posting www.themilitaryleader.com, that highlights the phrase this way: it ‘abdicates responsibility, shuts down creative problem solving, and concedes defeat.’
“The reality of it is” – This one might have replaced ‘the fact of the matter’. A bloviated way of saying ‘truthfully’.
“Me, personally” – Is there any other kind of me, than personally??  Redundant, redundant, redundant.

Which lead me to the most overused word in today's lexicon: Amazing. I hate to be the one to break it to you, but the sandwich you had for lunch, your new pair of Tom’s, your kid’s soccer coach, and your new set of golf clubs don’t qualify to the standard of amazing. They might be delicious, super cute, really talented, and nice and shiny, but they are not amazing. I recently heard a prominent, national news broadcaster use the word ‘amazing’ three times in two sentences describing cupcakes.  Enough already!

In the summer of 1969 a bunch of really smart people used slide rules, #2 pencils, and legal pads, and figured out how to propel a 6.2 million pound rocket, 238,000 miles to the moon, with three humans, land them on the moon and return them safely to earth.

That is amazing.

I’m not a member of too many groups but I might join this Facebook group dedicated to defeat the overuse of the word: www.facebook.com/groups/NotAmazing/

Summary

Improving your communication skills will improve your relationships and effectiveness. Make sure you are taking these two steps:

  1. Listen to what the other person is saying. Being a good listener is a leading indicator of developed emotional intelligence.
  2. Be conscious and aware of what you're saying. Don’t dilute your message by using too many clichés, or overused sayings.
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