Clean up Uncertain Phrases in Your Communication

What do these phrases mean to you?

  • A good chance
  • Almost certain
  • Better than even
  • Definite
  • Highly probable
  • Highly unlikely
  • Impossible
  • Improbable
  • Likely
  • Possible
  • Probable
  • Quite likely
  • Rare
  • Seldom
  • Unlikely
  • Very

Do they mean the same thing to the people listen you use them or read what your write?

What you say is only as effective as what is heard and understood by the listener. Too often, our messages are obscured by the the words we use. We compound the problem when we are unaware of the gap between what is intended and the message received.

I am guilty of using all of these phrases when speaking and writing. I shouldn’t expect other people to adopt what I think the phrases mean; I should work on using the clearest language possible.

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