Connect with us

Brainstorms

How Eliminating ‘To Be’ Verbs Can Change Your Viewpoint in Business

Instead, embrace E-Prime to get unstuck.

mm

Published

on

Forty five years ago, the linguist David Bourland published a controversial paper suggesting we do away with the verb “to be” and all of its associated forms (is, are, am, were, etc). Under this syntactic regime, you wouldn’t be able to construct sentences such as “My customers are stupid,” “My groomers are lazy” or “I am a failure.” Bourland argued that such phrasing implies certainty and objectivity, when in reality it expresses nothing more than an opinion. Restating it in what he called E-Prime — “I feel like a failure” or “I have failed at this task” or “I think my groomers are lazy” — makes such thoughts feel limited, temporary and addressable. Try it for a day or even just for the duration of your morning meeting. You may find it changes the way you view certain situations, or just pleasantly liberates you from the power of language over your thoughts and emotions.

Since launching in 2017, PETS+ has won 16 major international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact PETS+'s editors at editor@petsplusmag.com.

Advertisement

FEATURED VIDEO

Sponsored by Cogent Solutions Group

Reduce Your Pet’s Hip & Joint Discomfort with the Most Researched Hyaluronan on the Market

Nearly 60% of dogs and 90% of cats suffer from joint discomfort. Trixsyn joint supplement contains a patented and proven hyaluronic acid molecule for maximum efficacy to promote joint, bone, soft tissue, and cartilage health, keeping your pet feeling comfortable, for longer. Trixsyn is veterinarian recommended, safe and all-natural, and contains research-proven ingredients. Get your paws on the most-researched hyaluronic acid on the market. Learn more at Trixsyn.com.

Promoted Headlines

Most Popular