They say we average about 16000-ish words per day; yes, a little more for women and a little less for men.

If you are aiming for the recommended 5:1 positive/negative ratio to improve your thoughts, reduce your stress and be happier overall, join the club!

It's hard to stop saying certain things but it's much easier to replace words with more positive and proactive words. Here are a couple of changes I'm working on in my world ...

Move from can't to don't.

'I can't eat sugar every day' sounds restrictive to me but 'I don't eat sugar every day', sounds like a positive habit I am reinforcing. 

Use nouns instead of verbs.

Do I want to run? Typically, the answer is no. 

Do I want to be a runner? Yes, yes I do want to be a runner, even a slow runner (what has happened to the word 'jog', btw, did it disappear)? ‍ 

Decide to have no more problems.

When I have a problem, I am stressed. 

When I have a challenge, I am intrigued! When I have an opportunity, I am grateful. When I have a dilemma, it means I have choices. 

I poo-poo the word 'just'.

You are not just a parent, just a nurse or just doing a half-marathon or just popping in. 

You are a parent! You are a nurse. You are doing a half-marathon! You are popping in! 

It's not a strong word and you are a strong person, consider 'just' dropping it! Drop it! 

Sorry, Not Sorry

Sometimes I truly am sorry and sometimes I mean 'excuse me'. Sometimes, I just mean 'oops'! Sometimes 'I'm sorry' falls out of my mouth out of habit not out of genuine concern. 

In order to make the real apology mean anytime at all I need to decipher when to use 'I'm sorry' for good and when to stop using it out of habit.

I have no favourites (favorites, for my US friends!)

I have no favourite colours, foods or kids. 

I have preferences but it's my job to find something good in most things and if you make me pick a favorite it discounts other things that I like, enjoy, desire.

You should.

What do I know? You may want to consider something I write or say but I have no right to tell you you should do anything. Neither does anyone else; you do you!

I know.

When I say 'I know' to something you have said, it can be a quiet way of putting you down and discounting you. 

'Thank you for the information' is a kinder response, even if I already knew the information. 


See above. Sometimes I may not really care which restaurant we go to, but 'whatever' has a disrespectful connotation. 

Something like, 'It would make me so happy if you chose today.' is much nicer on the ears.


I could go on and on - but I'll stop for today. Are there any words/phrases that you have replaced that serve you better? Please share!

Cheering for you, Steph : )
PS - I will be 'performing' an all-new 'Evening of Inspiration' in a rare public event that will be happening on Vancouver Island Friday, January 26, 2024. Mark your calendars, if you are in the area!


Stephanie  Staples

Stephanie Staples

Your Revitalization Specialist

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