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Over Used Phrases In Our Conversations

We use them every day in conversation – those overworked phrases and cliches that we all get tired of hearing (and saying). Maybe there’s a better phrase to use than the one we automatically go to.

Photo by Bert Hardy/Getty Images

According to writer T.R. Slyder’s article in the Chicago Tribune newspaper, here are some of those tired phrases and alternatives that we might use instead:

“It is what it is.”

Slyder’s Substitute: Since “it is” = “it is,” don’t make the definition be the exact words of the words that are also being defined. Translation: Just don’t say it!


“How do you REALLY feel?”

Slyder’s Substitutes:

“Say your thang, doggy!” “Easy, big tiger.” “Deep breath.” (And then demonstrate with an exaggerated deep breath).


“I could care less.”

Slyder’s Substitutes:

“I could not care less.” “I have never cared less about anything.”


“That is really unique.”

Slyder’s Substitute: Since “unique” means one of a kind, there cannot be degrees of it. “Really” has no place in this sentence. Use “unique, “original” or “one of a kind.”


“The dog wants out.”

Slyder’s Substitute: “The dog wants to go outdoors.”


“…It does. It really does.”

Slyder’s Substitute: Nothing!


“I am NOT a happy camper.”

Slyder’s Substitute: Say what you are and save everyone some time.

–From the Editors at Netscape

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