Mastering communication means avoiding these three common phrases

The term “public speaking” often evokes images of packed auditoriums and illuminated podiums, yet in reality, we engage in public speaking on a regular basis. Whether it’s presenting in a meeting or pitching ideas to our boss, effective communication skills are essential.

According to Matt Abrahams, a Stanford University lecturer and communication expert, to convey your message clearly and impactfully, it’s crucial to avoid certain phrases.

“I always get so nervous when I speak.”

Expressing nervousness may seem like a way to garner sympathy, but it often draws attention to your anxiety rather than your message. Abrahams suggests refraining from mentioning nerves, as others may not even notice.

“I often feel…”

Inclusive language is key when addressing large groups. Using “I” statements can unintentionally exclude others. Instead of saying, “I find this scenario challenging,” opt for “We all know this scenario can be challenging.”

Acronyms and jargon

Avoid using confusing or technical language, as it can alienate listeners. Abrahams advises against relying on acronyms or industry-specific jargon. For instance, instead of using “UBI” for universal basic income, spell it out to ensure clarity for all audience members.

Many of us fall victim to the “curse of knowledge,” assuming others possess the same information or background as we do. Abrahams emphasizes the importance of empathy in overcoming this bias. Recognizing that your audience may not share your level of understanding can enhance your communication skills and ensure your message resonates effectively.

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