This article is about how important the words that we use are – especially in the work place. Self-confident and successful people choose their words wisely because they know that words have power. Here are six statements you’ll never ever hear them say:
“I don’t know how!”
The bottom line is that the brightest individuals are the most resourceful. They might not know how to do something, especially if it is something new, but they figure it out. They observe others who do it, they ask questions and they research. Then they get it done! We can all figure out how to do something if we make it our business to learn.
“I don’t have time.”
We all have 24 hours in a day—you, me, and Oprah Winfrey. It’s up to us to decide how we prioritize and spend these hours. To say you don’t have time for something really means you don’t want to do it. A much more productive way of communicating your timing needs is being direct. Try these:
“I can take that project on but I will need [X amount of time] to complete it.”
“Right now my focus is on X and X, perhaps Peter is better placed to take this on at this time?”
“Yes.” (to everything)
It may seem contradictory but there is an art to saying no. We can’t be all things to all people all the time. We cannot commit and attend every meeting, event, and conference that we are invited to. Saying no, kindly, is a successful person’s best friend. Thank the person for thinking of you but keep your plate manageable.
“I don’t get paid enough for this.”
Real professionals don’t project a disgruntled attitude. They know that in the end more money comes as a result of going the extra mile, not the other way around. This is a defeatist and destructive comment and learning to ask for a raise is an important life skill to master! Need a raise? Check out my free video training on how to ask for one here.
“It’s not fair.”
You’ve probably heard time and time again that life’s not fair. Successful people don’t expect it to be. They use their power to drive change and focus on what they can do, not what a victim they are. You can bet that sometimes people will get promoted over you, your boss will take credit for your work, and lower contributing peers will have a higher pay. Successful people decide what they will stand for and waste no time complaining.
“I never take vacation.”
This is like a badge of honor in New York City. It’s nuts! Sorry but the joke’s on you, if you work 52 weeks a year. Have you ever noticed how company CEOs and executives always take vacation days? They make their personal time a priority and know the importance of recharging. It’s crucial to our sanity, stamina, and creativity. A burnt out and fatigued colleague or leader is last on our list when we think about success and what it really means.
What have I missed? What other phrases do successful people never say?
This article originally appeared in Marie Claire.