The Psychology of Language: Which Words Matter the Most When We Talk

6.4K Flares Filament.io Made with Flare More Info'> 6.4K Flares ×

One of the things I fuss about a lot (especially at Buffer) are words—very simple words, in fact. Should it say “Hi” or “Hey?” Should it be “cheers” or “thanks?” How about “but” or “and?

There are many occasions when Joel and I sit over one line and change it multiple times, until we feel it really sits right. This is partly to improve our metrics for click rate and others. It is also to simply create the right emotion. The one key question we ask ourselves is:

“How does this make you feel?”

The question might sound very obvious. And yet, it’s a very different question to say for example “Which message do you want to send?” or “What is the content of this announcement?” By always focusing on how it will make someone feel whenever we write even a single line, we immediately improved the amount of responses we got from our users.

Recently we explored how much sleep do we really need to work productively. Let’s do the same with language. We’ll dig in to how our brain works and expose some of the most persuasive words in english:

Bonus tip: Add optimal scheduling to these lessons on language, and watch your social media updates improve immediately!

Our brain while listening to words

Recently, a lot of the longstanding paradigms in how our brain processes language were overthrown. New and cutting edge studies that produced quite startling and different results. The one study I found most interesting is UCL’s findings on how we can separate words from intonation. Whenever we listen to words, this is what happens:

“Words are then shunted over to the left temporal lobe [of our brain] for processing, while the melody is channelled to the right side of the brain, a region more stimulated by music.”

So our brain uses two different areas to identify the mood and then the actual meaning of the words. On second thought, what still doesn’t quite make sense is why we can even distinguish “language” so distinctly from any other sounds.

The UCL team tried to find out about exactly this. They played speech sounds and then non-speech sounds, that still sounded similar to speech to people. While measuring their brain activity, they found something fascinating:

“Speech was singled out for special treatment near the primary auditory cortex.”

In short, our brains can magically single out language from any other sounds and port it to the right “department” in our brain to give it meaning.

This graphic also gives a great overview about how our brain process language:

brain-language

So intonation and actual wording matters, but what is the split?

The myth of the “55% body language, 38% tone of voice, 7% actual words”  rule

Screen Shot 2014-10-10 at 4.28.35 PM

You’ve probably heard the above many times before. It’s one of the longest standing study results that has become a synonym for how language works. Only in recent years have people explored again what the contents of that study were.

The study, which dates back to 1967, had a very different purpose and wasn’t at all about defining how we process language:

“The fact is Professor Mehrabian’s research had nothing to do with giving speeches, because it was based on the information that could be conveyed in a single word.”

Here is what actually happened that triggered the above result:

“Subjects were asked to listen to a recording of a woman’s voice saying the word “maybe” three different ways to convey liking, neutrality, and disliking. They were also shown photos of the woman’s face conveying the same three emotions. They were then asked to guess the emotions heard in the recorded voice, seen in the photos, and both together. The result? The subjects correctly identified the emotions 50 percent more often from the photos than from the voice.”

The truth, so famous author Philip Yaffe argues is that the actual words “must dominate by a wide margin.

Facial expression, brevity and avoiding adjectives in speech

Smiling – the highest positive emotional gesture

There are of course a number of other most powerful elements to consider when thinking about speech. One of the most important ones that researcher Andrew Newberg uncovers in his book “Words Can Change Your Brain” is facial expressions that we carry.

Newberg explains his reasoning for why the Mona Lisa’s contented smile turned into one of the most well known paintings around the world:

“We know that smiling is a very powerful gesture; we were doing a research study looking at different symbols, and the symbol that was rated with the highest positive emotional content was the smiley face. The painting of the Mona Lisa is one particular example of that feeling of calmness.”

Talk no longer than 30 seconds in a given conversation

Another element for how we can process language is the number of words there are for us to process. Of course we know this as somewhat obvious and yet it’s always a great reminder:

“The human brain can really only hold on to four things at a time, so if you go on and on for five or 10 minutes trying to argue a point, the person will only remember a very small part of that.”

Instead, 30 seconds is the optimal amount for us to speak at any given time says Newberg:

“Speak briefly, meaning that you speak one or two sentences, maybe 30 seconds worth or so, because that’s really what the human brain can take in.”

Avoid adverbs in speech and writing

Something I struggle the most with is to stop using adverbs. They are, in fact one of the worst elements of speech and even make a listener or reader lose trust.

Writer Kim Peres explains:

“Using single words to describe actions and objects quickly brings them to mind. When someone “stabs” a straw into their drink we see it, but “pokes swiftly” is not so clear. When a person “meanders” it is more accurate than “walking slowly.”

Peres goes on to explain that “too much unnecessary text induces skipping.”

What we easily forget on a very high level is that using fewer words builds trust. So any words that don’t convey meaning can erode our readers’ and listeners’ interest.

3 of the most important ideas when we use words every day

The skill of asking questions: “What would you do?”

When I read this, I realized I totally suck at it. Journalist-turned-entrepreneur Evan Ratliff put it like this “all that’s really saved me (so far) from madness is being able to formulate questions that deliver useful answers.”

He points out that any questions that start with “who,” “what,” “where,” “when,” “how,” or “why” are likely to get great responses. To be avoided are “would,” “should,” “is,” “are,” and “do you think,” as they can limit how people respond to you a lot.

How to Get Great Responses to Your

To give an example:

Good: “What would you do?”
Bad: “Would you do X?”
Terrible: “Would you do X or Y or Z or Q or M or W or … ?”

His advice is to practice questions that begin with the 5Ws in order to have more meaningful conversations.

Removing “is” from your language

This next one is super interesting. Alfred Korzybski, the creator of General Semantics was firmly convinced that the ‘to be’ verbs like “I am, he is, they are, we are” promoted insanity. Why? Quite simply because things can’t be exactly equal to something else. Douglas Cartwright explains further:

This X = Y creates all kinds of mental anguish and it doesn’t need to because we never can reduce ourselves to single concepts. You believe yourself to have more complexity than that, don’t you? Yet unconsciously accepting this languaging constrains us to believe we operate as nothing more or less than the idea we identified ourselves with.

Read the following list of examples and you’ll see immediately how different the outcome of the statements is:

  • “He is an idiot” vs. “He acted like an idiot in my eyes”
  • “She is depressed” vs. “She looks depressed to me”
  • “I am a failure” vs. “I think I’ve failed at this task”
  • “I am convinced that” vs. “It appears to me that”

You, Because, Free , Instantly, New – The 5 Most persuasive words in English

In a terrific article Gregory Ciotti researched the top 5 words in English. His list is not suprising and yet the research behind it, is extremely powerful.

“You” – or your name is something that’s so easy to be forgotten and yet so important for great communication:

“Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.” ~ Dale Carnegie

“Free” – Gregory explains Ariely’s principle of loss aversion. All of us naturally go for the lowest hanging fruit and free triggers exactly that:

1kW0Y-1

“Because” – Because is probably as dangerous as it is useful. Creating a causal relationship is incredibly persuasive:

“even giving weak reasons have been shown to be more persuasive than giving no reason at all.”

“Instantly” – If we can trigger something immediately, our brain jumps on it like a shark, says Greg:

“Words like “instant,” “immediately,” or even”fast” are triggers for flipping the switch on that mid-brain activity.”

Check out the full post from Greg here.

Quick last fact: Make three positive comments for every negative statement

The last tip, that surprised me a little comes from Andrew Newberg. His research suggests that negative arguments have a very detrimental effect to our brain. We need to pay particular attention to not let them take over and working agains them with this 3-to-1 ratio:

“When you get into a dialogue with somebody to discuss any particular issue, a three-to-one ratio is a relatively good benchmark to think about; you wind up creating the opportunity for a more constructive dialogue and hopefully a better resolution.”

I love exploring how we can improve our language for better conversations and better lives. What have you found to work best when talking/writing to others?

 Image sources: Startup Stock Photos, Voxy, Gregory Ciotti, Noun Project

  • http://www.kashflow.com Duane Jackson

    A good read. I’m really obsessive about using the right words. In conversation as well as the written word. My wife is the exact opposite, which causes all sorts of frustrations on both sides.

    • LeoWid

      Hi Duane, thanks for stopping by and yep, I often feel quite similar. I can only imagine that this might cause some interesting problems, I hope the above might help to sort (some) of them out! :)

      • http://twitter.com/RobNonS RobNonStop✅

        Very useful article, no fluff, loved it. I was also irritated by the adverbs being called adjectives, adverbs are much worse. I would put them in the following order of importance and easiness to be understood:

        verbs > nouns > adjectives > adverbs

        Tribal societies with simpler languages seem to place more importance on verbs. For example instead of “The Hunters” they would call themselves “those who hunt”. So rather than trying to communicate all the associations that come with the term hunter and the question of what it means to be a hunter (experience, pride, bravery, danger, heroism, skill, violence…) they simply describe an activity, the easiest and most concrete kind of term to imagine visually.

        I also remember this study saying that women are better and communicating things and naturally use more verbs than men, who use too many nouns.

        Additionally we have lots of Latin or pseudo-Latin words in our European languages that turn simple verbs into complicated nouns XYZification.

        There was this TED Talk on how the human brain (like all other brains) is made for movement:
        http://youtu.be/7s0CpRfyYp8

        And verbs (To-Do-Words) are the kind of words closest to movement. Many languages only require a verb for a sentence, simply stating “Does.” Instead of “He does it.” In Latin lessons we were told to always look for the predicate first.

    • CrankyFranky

      I used to fret over the correct choice of words – when I worked in sales – knowing the difference may be a $1000 commission or nothing

      then I traveled the world marveling at how my girlfriend could make friends everywhere despite having no common word of language

      so these days I tend to use body language – walk into a no-engrish store in Japan – smile and point, bow and smile – and wave on the way out – everybody happy !

  • https://plus.google.com/u/0/105204161368183855505/ Caluori

    Why do I like you? Because this new, free guide instantly helped me.

  • http://www.facebook.com/timkassouf Tim Kassouf

    Great article! But, I’m thinking you should have fussed a little bit more over one of the words in your first sentence. (I believe you meant, “right {off} the bat.”)

    Sorry Leo, I couldn’t help it!

    • LeoWid

      Hi Tim, so glad you liked the post. And out of all the articles, this is the one most suitable to point that out (and of course it’s always suitable! :) ), just edited that.

  • http://twitter.com/PChiappa Pat Chiappa

    truly excellent article (yikes, 2 adjectives!) Most surprising to me was Newburg’s suggestion of talking only 30 seconds at a time in conversation.

    • LeoWid

      Hi Pat, thanks so much for kind words, so glad you liked it. Yep, I’m taking that to my heart too – going to be quiet more quickly from now on.

  • http://www.facebook.com/turnerdonna Donna L Turner

    Leo, this is the most useful blog I have read in a long time. Thank you!

    • LeoWid

      I’m humbled, thanks Donna!

  • http://twitter.com/yonayen Yonathan Ayenew

    Best read of the day! I’m impressed you kept it organized despite its length. What tools/tricks do you use to organize your thinking during the writing process?

    • LeoWid

      thanks so much Yonathan, glad I could still keep it organized! That’s a good point, so I mostly write in 2 batches. The first one is research, where I just jot down things and don’t worry about structure. The second one is the actual writing of the article. I like to have quite a bit of time in between the two things, so that my creative brain can do the work in my subconscious, especially see this article about it: http://blog.bufferapp.com/why-we-have-our-best-ideas-in-the-shower-the-science-of-creativity

    • Scrum Solutions

      Great article, thanks Leo

  • http://twitter.com/sonjabl sonjablignaut

    Very useful and interesting post. What I found fascinating is that most of the examples used in the section about not using adjectives are metaphors. Research has found that we use 6 metaphors a minute, and that it’s a primary sense-making device for humans. To me, they’re one of the most powerful language devices.

    • LeoWid

      Wow, that’s so cool Sonja, I had no idea we are using metaphors so much – do you have a link to the research? Would love to check it out!

    • E

      Yes indeed, Sonja. Metaphor is a powerful communicator. And it’s everywhere. Thank you for this observation.

  • http://www.thesocialpenguinblog.com/ Mike McGrail

    Leo, what a fantastic read. When I saw the length, I thought it might meander a little, but it read so well. I’ll be taking these tips into my writing and speaking!

    • LeoWid

      Hi Mike, amazing, I’m so glad to hear that despite the length you made it through! Hope the tips will help!

  • http://www.grouppartners.net John Caswell

    Excellent article and I’ve widely shared! Keep at it it!

    • LeoWid

      Hi John, thanks so much for the kind heads up, that’s awesome! :)

  • orleansphonebk

    Great tips for my future blogging, I often stuff in too many adjectives which detracts from my writing.

    • LeoWid

      Yep, me too, time to cut them out, it’s quite tough I found! :)

  • denysedd

    Great post Leo, you can really tell how well researched it is. In fact it is one of the best and most useful posts I have ever read – and for everyone.
    Looks like I have some work to do before I publish my next Blog post!

    • LeoWid

      Hi Denyse, thanks so much for the kind words, I’m humbled that you enjoyed the read! :)

      • denysedd

        Hey Leo don’t feel humbled, feel proud ;-) It has already been RTd and Favd many times by my followers, so looks like you’re set for another record!

  • http://twitter.com/ProWritingAid Pro Writing Aid

    Very interesting. Though when you say don’t use adjectives the example you give from Kim Peres “pokes swiftly” is, in fact, an example of an adverb. I would say that adverbs are far worse than adjective, often used to prop up a weak verb, as in the example. Stephen King says “the road to hell is paved with adverbs”. We have a tool that helps writers by highlighting adverbs in writing so they can easily identify them, as well as numerous other style issues http://prowritingaid.com/ and this article is interesting further discussion on the subject of adverbs. http://www.brainpickings.org/index.php/2013/03/13/stephen-king-on-adverbs/

    • LeoWid

      Thanks so much for the awesome resources here, I loved brainpickings article about this and Stephen King was 100% right. I’ll have to dig into this more!

      • April Murphy

        The article still says “don’t use adjectives,” rather than “don’t use adverbs.” It seems from your examples and reasoning for the prescription that you did, in fact, mean “don’t use adverbs” but the article was not changed to reflect that.

  • Lucille Zimmerman

    Leo, I found this post by someone who reposted it on Facebook. I don’t know what Buffer is and I don’t know if you routinely post here. I am a newly published author, counselor, and psychology teacher and your post gripped me. I want to follow you. Where is the best place to do that? I apologize for seeming so uninformed.

    • LeoWid

      Hi Lucille, thanks so much for the kind words, I’m so glad the article was helpful! Definitely, you can find me on Twitter http://twitter.com/leowid and if you’ve any questions about Buffer or anything else, just hit me up! :)

  • Ian Brownlee

    As a linguist, NLP master trainer and specialist in Ericksonian Hypnosis, I am pleased to say that I consider this to be an excellent article. I too am deeply involved in the study of how emotions can be created by words and how they affect the perception of meaning

    To find someone else interested in this area is, indeed, a serendipitious event..
    Well done and keep writing!
    Have a great. weekend.

    • LeoWid

      wow, amazing, thanks a bunch Ian, especially coming from you, this means a lot! :)

  • http://twitter.com/CBurkeContracts Cora Burke

    What a great article – clear, to the point and instantly applicable to both professional and personal life. Thank you so much for sharing.

    • LeoWid

      I’m so glad you like it Cora, thanks for the kind words! :)

  • Sam

    What if have good articles like this every morning? Awesome, very organized and clear and also with excellent references!

    • LeoWid

      Thanks a ton Sam, I’m so glad! :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/scottwayres Scott Ayres

    That totally made my brain hurt…. :P

  • http://www.facebook.com/growtomorrow Tim Smith

    Well I must say, this has to be one of the best reads I’ve done in a week or two

    • LeoWid

      Thanks so much Tim, really glad you liked it. I hope you’ll be back for more real soon! :)

  • @margaretmolloy

    Best read in a while. Thanks

  • http://twitter.com/lulegaspi Luis Legaspi

    Leo thank you for the well written advice and research. I constantly find myself obsessing over words in email communication at my work. It is great to see I am not weird. This reminds me of a great class on Neuromarketing that I took when I was on exchange at the University of Melbourne and how important it is to understand how we physiologically process words and information.

    Lastly, thanks for building this great app, I just downloaded it to my iPhone.

  • Janet Strausser

    Thank you! Wishing I’d read this before blowing my last interview.

  • http://twitter.com/deciApp deci

    Super article. Fascinating on many levels.

  • http://www.facebook.com/meghan.keener.1 Meghan Keener

    Great article, Leo. You touched on behavioral economics, linguistics, positive psychology, and even citing the pioneer of “neurospirituality”, Newburg. Here’s a way for folks to measure their 3:1 positivity ratios: http://www.positivityratio.com/single.php I enjoy following you on Twitter from @PosPsychology – keep up the good work!

  • http://www.facebook.com/joviee Jovie Bernadette Endaya

    Thank you for reading, this was a very interesting article and helpful too. If u can , kindly elaborate more on the last point in 1:3 ratio.

  • http://twitter.com/dumkydewilde Dumky de Wilde

    Another great article Leo! I think mail chimp really nails this in their communication. They have that ease with which they seem to communicate like you’re on an equal level in the conversation. At the same time you know that a lot of effort has gone into it to keep it funny, to the point, in line with their identity and a pleasure to read (just like you mentioned a smile is always nice to watch, it’s even better if you can make someone smile).
    On a side note, the research you mentioned reminded me of the fact that we’re always extra keen on hearing our own name (even when it’s only something that just sounds similar ), so naming someone’s name is always a plus in any kind of communication. In any case, thanks again for the great read!

  • http://www.facebook.com/duffmcduffee Duff McDuffee

    hurr durr science sayz im too dumb to hear long sentensez

    Do we really want to dumb down our culture even MORE than it already is?

    “Speak briefly, meaning that you speak one or two sentences, maybe 30 seconds worth or so, because that’s really what the human brain can take in.”

    If this were true, it would be impossible to read scientific journal articles. Most undergrads find it doable after a little work.

    • george

      This is for the majority of people we have to deal with. Sales and marketing individuals need some sort of guideline to deal with the majority. Not all are educated enough to pay attention to what we have to say. Besides, we just need numbers on our paychecks. ;)

    • CrankyFranky

      as a college teacher with 4 hour lessons, looks like I’m screwed !

      otherwise this advice is – urrr – like – awesome – but thank You, Because it was Free, and I Instantly New more than before … (almost?)

  • http://twitter.com/TasGeographic Tasmanian Geographic

    What a thoughtful article. As I read it, I thought of one Professor Kirkpatrick, a university scholar who has mastered the affirming and thoughtful “Mmmmm”. He’ll listen to you until you are done, and this patience means that you listen very carefully to his responses. So, perhaps, in line with the thirty seconds suggestion you have given, there is much wisdom to be found in not saying anything vocal, at all….until the correct moment arrives.

  • http://www.hokstad.com/blog vidarh

    Consider how your advice on writing more tersely can be shortened:

    “Reading this hit me like a rock. Peres goes on to explain that ” …”, which shows how detrimental adjectives can be.

    “We easily forget that using fewer words builds trust. Words that don’t convey meaning erode our audiences interest. This is important for me to keep reminding myself of”

  • bsbechtel

    I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one who obsesses more over the wording on my site than my code. Great article guys!

  • Aaron Stackpole

    What we easily forget on a very high level is that using less words builds trust.

    For an article about language, I wonder why you missed the incorrect word usage in the above sentence?

    What we easily forget on a very high level is that using FEWER words builds trust.

  • Muge Arslan

    This article is great and very interesting, thank you for sharing. It inspired me to work on a one for my language Turkish.

  • Rodney McKay

    “Reading this, hit me like a rock and couldn’t make it any more clear I think”, etc.

    No further comment required.

  • James Marson

    I have always been intrigued by words and writing and the difference certain words can make. Us as leaders need to make an impact every day. So why not be an impact writer..?!! Great article and thank you for sharing.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rod.cook.33 Rod Cook

    FANTASTIC JOB Leo Widrich Great cross between Marketing and Psychology with Physiology thrown in you are totally fantastic Rod Cook
    http://WWW.MLMCONSULTANT.COM

  • http://www.facebook.com/lori.grayson.9 Lori D’Arezzo Grayson

    You did a great job Leo because this is useful and interesting information. :)

  • http://twitter.com/arodriguez3310 Anthony Rodriguez

    It took me a while to get back to this article but so glad that I did. This is a truly fascinating piece. Thanks for putting it together.

  • Андрей Шостка

    I’ve just started reading your blog and I can’t resist. It is awesome, guys!

  • platethief

    in this article, you advise against using adjectives, yet all the examples you give are of ADVERBS not adjectives.

    Difficult to take this article seriously when you don’t appear to know simple word classes yet giving advice about language.

  • http://twitter.com/LovaineC Lovaine Cohen

    Very interesting article Leo. I’m in the process of writing copy for my new website and this helps.Thanks for posting!

  • Sam

    Yeah, I’d change “adjectives” to “adverbs” – that mistake was really off-putting.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000389239445 John Phillip Pesebre

    excellent

  • http://twitter.com/JaneFrankland Jane Frankland

    An interesting read. I’m fascinated by words that influence and sentence patterns.

  • Kay B. Meyer

    Your excellent blog post and the discussion should lead to better writing for our citizens with non-apparent brain processing challenges such as those with ADHD, multi-language groups with diverse grammar and intonation systems, people with hearing loss, and post-traumatic brain injuries.

    We speech-language pathologists (U.S. name and certification) have been the pioneers in identifying the brain injuries that interrupt the processes of listening, understanding, and speaking. Those skills are the foundation for learning written language systems. Don’t forget us in the discussion!

    .

  • http://twitter.com/meaganbroughton Meagan Broughton

    If you want an answer, ask the (direct) question.

  • http://www.facebook.com/donna.karson Donna Karson

    I’m a little late in reading this, but thanks. Very good stuff and well done.

  • Sandor Sipos

    The article contains a couple of well-thought ideas, congrats about that.

    I especially like the bust of the myth of 55%-38%-7% effect of communication channels, which is sadly misunderstood by way too much people. It only talks about the explanatory effect of tone and body language when verbal content is ambiguous.

    Unfortunately, the article also makes the same mistake by promoting 30 seconds or 4 (!) sentences as a maximum length of continuous talking. Sadly, this only reinforces the collective ADHD of our society. Come on, shouldn’t we learn to listen, instead of expecting other to speak for only 30 seconds and say only 4 sentences to us? We are not in Teletubbies to only use 5-words-long sentences, speaking slooooowly and using long breaks after every 4 sentences… Grown-up people should listen to others for more than 30 seconds, process and understand what the other is trying to say, and then reflect. Sometimes, this takes 10, other times 30 seconds, and sometimes it is 1-2-x minutes of talking and listening. A meaningful conversation does not exist without careful listening.

    And the last thing: precise talking sometimes need adjectives and adverbs as well, especially when a single verb/noun is not precise or meaningful enough. Here’s an example: “I like when you talk such clear and also, when you express your incredibly creative ideas in a determined way.” has not the same meaning as: “I like when you talk and also when you express your ideas.”

    And yes, this was more than 4 sentences, and probably more than 30 seconds to read. I hope you could spend this “huge” amount of time from your life to read it :)

    Sandor Sipos

    Hungary

  • Bill Treloar

    Quick point for an article about language use: you shouldn’t say “Less words builds trust.” It should be “Fewer words build trust.” Less is only for things you can’t count. Despite that, I will tweet this post — really helpful information here.

  • Tigran Hakobyan

    Thank you for the great article. I enjoyed reading every single bullet.

  • stinkyboomboom

    A friend once said, “Life is so much easier when I ask myself four questions before talking to someone. Is what I’m about to say kind, necessary, timely and true? If not, it doesn’t need to be said.”

  • fuzzmello

    The answer to your final question is amazingly simple. I find that if I forget about myself entirely when engaged in a shared experience communication becomes more fluid, less cluttered with superficiality for all, and fun. The concentration lightly tests on the subject, but my first concern is to understand the other person or people. Especially during disagreements.

  • Bill

    I’m supposed to trust the advice of someone who doesn’t know how to use commas, or the difference between “less” and “fewer”?

    • Medyum Platformu

      Medyum yorumları Medyum Şikâyetleri Medyumlar Hakkında
      bilinmesi gerekenler.

      Son zamanlarda çoğalan Medyum Siteleri Yine Medyumlar
      tarafından insanları aldatmak amaçlı yapılan yorum siteleri ve Medyum
      olduklarını iddia eden şahısların işlem yaptığı gerçek kişilerin yorumlarını
      okuyun.

      Medyumlar tarafından aldatılan kandırılan parası alınan
      kişilerin yorumlarını okumanızı tavsiye ediyoruz.

      Medyum Aramadan önce ziyaret edilecek tarafsız tek site. http://www.medyumplatformu.com

      Medyum olduklarını iddia eden ve aşağıdaki büyüleri
      yaptıklarını eden bu kişilerin tuzağına düşmeyin.

      Aşk büyüsü

      Bağlama büyüsü

      Evlilik Büyüsü

      Canbar büyüsü

      Papaz büyüsü

      Ayırma büyüsü

      Büyü bozma

      Geri getirme büyüsü

      Gideni geri getirme büyüsü

      Sitemizi ziyaret edin yorumlara bakın aldanmayın.

      . http://www.medyumplatformu.com

  • Random Internet Goer

    Shouldn’t “using less words builds trust” actually be “using /fewer/ words builds trust”?

  • Mabel

    Mmm, Lindor truffle. ;)
    “Slowly” and “swiftly” are adverbs, not adjectives–but good advice. Better to pick a strong verb than modify a weak one.

  • Leo

    FYI: Your advice reads sort of “off” to me. Especially since you are categorizing modifiers incorrectly.

    In your example sentence, “too much unnecessary text induces skipping” contains two unnecessary ADVERBS — ‘too,’ and ‘much.’ If you eliminate the adjective — ‘unnecessary’ — you get the non-sense phrase “Text induces skipping.”

    The clearest option it to avoid adverbs, and keep the necessary adjectives. Which leaves us with the terse & meaningful “Unnecessary text induces skipping,”

    The key to better writing is strong verbs, and near zero adverbs. Adjectives should be used, though sparingly.

    • Jason Fonceca

      lol! He was talking about removing “ADJECTIVES”… not adverbs.

    • Me

      Sparingly is an adverb

  • Olenka Lysak

    The skill of asking questions: “What would you do?”

  • Bappy

    great its help me a lot. i have a question By what mental process do people listen to, comprehend and remember what they hear?

  • doubtful eye rolling

    why is it only the women on your staff “love” to do things, oh language gurus?

  • Woon Chin Yeong

    A great read! The guide made me think twice before I write/talk. I quickly edited one of my survey work questions after reading this. :)

  • ArtaGene

    Hmm… Why do you do this?

  • http://csvendrik.com Claudia Vendrik

    “instantly” is an adverb, right?

  • Tiffany

    Leo, I’m not sure who make the infographic for the word “free,” but it’s wrong. You either use a decimal or the cent sign, not both. The way it is written means less than a penny, actually!

  • http://www.dreamboxcreative.com/ dorubere

    Love this article! It appears to me (notice I am already using one of your suggestion.. :) that communicating in writing is very different from communicating verbally. In communicating verbally I think it is important to be aware of your personality profile, so that you can adjust your level of brevity if you are a D, intentionally speak less and actually listen if you are an I, be supportive and positive if you are a C, and participate more in the conversation if you are an S. In addition, taking into account the other person engaged in the conversation based on their personality (if apparent) also helps you shape the conversational rhythm to increase the actual communication.

  • jonnie

    Has a nice ring to it. I’ll take poetic license.
    Free.
    Because
    you
    instantly
    knew.

  • Natalie Canavor

    Another interesting angle to this is that we English-speakers trust short basic words most–the everyday single-syllable ones that come from Anglo-Saxon. Not the longer French and Latinate words derived from Britain’s conquerors 10-20 centuries ago. That’s one of the reasons clear simple writing work best for business purposes. Every other purpose too, actually.

    Thanks for pointing out that Mehrabian’s research is so often misninterpreted. He himself disavowed the way it’s cited, but the myth goes on.

  • macbruum owsley

    baloney

  • Hata H. Zappah

    Wiping out “is” would not be a good idea, as X=Y is exactly what we need more of in our language. Having more of this in our lives allows us to think in metaphors, and even helps us become more philosophical in our speech.

  • Dale Carnegie

    Leo, Leo, Leo you are so persuasive and appear to be very knowledgeable. Thank you for the advice, I will use it in the future. I would love to read further suggestions on this topic.

  • Sandro da Silva

    Leo: great article! Well done! Just loved reading it.