Terrific Broth

The life of two scientists, creating a small home, in big mountains

Tag: Best of Web (Page 2 of 2)

How Women Undermine Themselves with Words

From stop apologizing, to avoid saying “just”, the internet has been criticizing on how women speak in work place and how these habits reflect women’s lack of confidence. A recent, interesting article, titled “how women undermine themselves with words“, is a review of all these little habits that we could avoid to be more professional. Moreover, it compared the incidence that how men uses them. This is also the first time I read from Goop. It is so hard to keep up with all the cool sites!

Stop Saying “Just”, Just stop.


A former exec at Google and Apple named Ellen Petry Leanse noticed that how many times women in work place used the word “just”, as she described in this article. It reminded me how many times I use it. So I searched my emails for “just” and surprised that how I almost start every request to my co-workers with “just”. More strikingly, this only happens when I email my male co-workers, and almost never in the emails I sent to my female co-workers. 

I also picked up the use of “just” AFTER I moved to NC 3.5 years ago. yes, the time when I moved away from a familiar and friendly environment where I was very confident with my performance, to an environment where exist strong discrete hierarchy and certain level of sexism. What made it even worse was that I suddenly worked with two male co-workers with strong egos. This was entirely a different working culture and it hit my confidence hard. 

Now I could see where the problem originated, it is time to stop using this word and to actively expel it from my daily vocabulary. Let us see if change the way we speak can truly change our way of thinking for the better. 

No, I am not sorry.

The New York Times published an article titled “Why Women Apologize and Should Stop” that deserve some serious applause.

It is true for many women, myself included, “I am sorry” is over-used to show our politeness and is labeled ourselves as weak unnecessarily. According to this study, “women have a lower threshold for what constitutes offensive behavior,” therefore apologize more for the same social situations in which men do not apologize.

To me there is also another reason of why women feeling the need of apologize, even when we are demanding things we deserve – like a raise. We are not confident with ourselves and simply do not think we deserve what we have got, or should have gotten. That is why the society can get away with unequal pay and poor maternity care for so long in such a well-developed economy.

Stop apologizing does not mean we have to behavior rudely. Simply state what we want to say and realize that this is what others need to hear. Only when we stop treating ourselves like the second class, we could stop be treated like the second class.

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