WEEKEND CHALLENGE: Watch Your Crutch Words

What is your crutch word? What word(s) do you say so often people know that you will say it at least three times in a conversation? Crutch words are words or phrases that you go back to whenever you aren’t sure what to say, feel uncomfortable, or because you don’t realize you use them.

Airpark Toastmasters wrote a nice blog on how to overcome your reliance on crutch words. Click the link and take a moment to read it and then come back to finish reading about your challenge this weekend.

Do you have a better idea about your crutch words now? Perhaps it is one of the ones we hear quite often in our meetings and our own conversations:

  • So
  • Therefore
  • You know?
  • Like
  • Rather than
  • In other words
  • Something like that
  • And other things
  • So on

You can use phrases as crutch words at times as well, as you may have noticed above. When writers write, they look for phrases they use too often in their text. When speakers speak, we should ensure we are not relying on phrases or words to get us through our content. By not overrelying on one word or phrase, we become better speakers and encourage brain activity as we think about new ways to present our information.

As you speak this weekend, whether professionally or with loved ones and acquaintances, take note of how you use your crutch words. After you evaluate yourself, leave a comment here or on our FaceBook page to let us know how you did.