This vlog catches Matt in the middle of a hectic week. Crammed with highs and lows of varying degrees these lead to him talk about 'Energy Vampires,' being coached and words he hates. This is all followed on from in the podcast below.
“Hate” is a strong word. But there are words that I have come to avoid using. Why? Well, I’ve always held the belief that relationship with people is one of the keys to having a great business. A company should strive to have a great relationship with its customers, staff and suppliers.
Yet, words can engage or confuse. They can build others up, or destroy dreams. If we want to confidently network as entrepreneurs, we have to avoid talking a confusing language. Because I’ve held this belief for a long time, there are some words that I now choose to avoid. Words that cloud clarity.
Simply put, if you want to be clear when communicating to the world around you, it is crucial to stop using certain ‘fluffy’ or ‘non-descript’ terms that lack mutual meaning, or group understanding.
The word “nice” is, in my opinion, nondescript. There is no energy in the word “nice.” For example, the phrase “Oh, you look nice,” doesn’t tell me much. It’s like saying, “You don’t look bad, but you don’t look great. You look OK.”
If you are asked about a restaurant: “How was the food?” It seems too vague to simply reply “Nice!” It is not inspiring anyone else to visit that restaurant.
If someone says, "That Matt Edmundson, he's a nice bloke." I don't know if that's a compliment. I have to be honest with you. I often say that “nice” is equivalent to “not inspiring, challenging, or enthusiastic.” If something's nice it doesn't really inspire me, it doesn't really challenge me, and it doesn't really build my enthusiasm. Try being more specific in your vocabulary. Be really descriptive about what you say and notice the effects. Instead of telling your kids "Be nice to people." Utter something like: Be kind to people, be generous, help them.” Your kids will understand your instruction and you will be surprised by the consequence.
Another word that I think is overused and misunderstood would be “integrity”. Yes, “integrity.” You have seen it on just about every company brochure, which is out there. It's in everyone's mission statement. It's on everyone's values list. It's “integrity.”
How many people, when asked: “what do you want to be when you grow up?” Reply: "I want to be a person of integrity."
What does integrity actually mean? What does it mean to you? What does it mean for your company? Have you ever said, "We value integrity." Maybe it’s on your website! If so, take a moment to think on what you mean by this phrase. What is it about integrity that you value? In response to this question, some people will comment: “We want to be people who do what we say.” “Our word is our bond”, that kind of integrity.
Be specific, get down to it. Don't use words that cause “blur”, or confusion.
When I Google the phrase “quotes about can’t” I generate 104 million results. In our gym in Liverpool, there is a little poster that reads “The can’t equals five burpees.” So, if you say, “I can’t,” you have to do five burpees. (A.KA: press ups/ push ups… Crossfit style!)
I know it’s easy to give up and be negative about fitness, health amongst other areas of life. But, the truth is: as humans, there are some things we cannot do. A can-do attitude is great, but it is prideful when it becomes unrealistic.
Sticks and stones will bruise bones…
I'm obviously not a fan of words that are racist, homophobic, and words that deliberately try to offend the group of people. For instance, I do not use words that convey sexism. I try personally not to use generalisations but I do need a little more practise at that. (Don’t we all?) I am a big fan of words that encourage people, which inspire people. I love words that encourage me and inspire me; I especially love words that make me laugh. Go after these terms and you will see an improvement in your outlook on relationship and life.
I think phrases like, "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me." are untrue statements. Let me explain: if you use words that offend, or participate in name-calling – whenever you try to cut people down – or discourage people, rather than encourage people, you are changing the atmosphere and having a negative effect on positive networking. Don’t use words to un-inspire people rather than inspire them. Avoid making them cry rather than making them laugh
I think the words we choose to use are important. Whether it's conveying an idea, or persuading your team to take a certain course of action. If I'm trying to sell an idea, or vision, or a concept – the words that I use to paint those pictures and to tell that story are super, super important
What would be the words that you would add to that list? What words do you not like at all, and you would like to see eradicated? What would those words be?
I would love to know what you think. Share your thoughts and ideas directly in the comments below. Your contribution will ignite a community of ecommerce entrepreneurs that confidently communicate with others. It’s time to think about our vocabulary, because this stuff builds character. And ultimately, my word choices are as crucial as my business deals. So, join in the conversation and let me know what you think!
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