The internet is full of writing tips for how to improve your writing skills. You already know to use action verbs and avoid passive voice. Current writing standards for creating content also stress the use of natural language that resonated with humans and not necessarily the algorithm, which in some cases may cause a negative effect on your writing. You may end up using words that are common in real conversations that you have with people, but too much of that will weaken your prose.

The words and phrases you use in your writing can strengthen or weaken your prose. Elevate the impact of your writing by eliminating non-words and weak phrases. These only take up space and dilute your voice. The end goal of your written content is to educate, inform, and convert customers. Powerful writing is what gets your content read.

The 10 Words We Recommend You Stop Using In Your Writing

Really

Use specific measurements or specifications instead of being vague. If you are referring to an object as really big, instead reference a weight or height or both. Eliminate the vagueness.

Adding details or switching ‘really‘ out for something specific can take your description from vague to accurate.

Think | Believe

These words turn your statement into an opinion. Provide your readers with facts. If your purpose is to deliver information, these words will give your reader a sense you are not sure of yourself.

Project confidence and convey clear information to reassure your reader that your content provides useful intelligence and data.

A lot

It’s as vague as the word really. Give your readers an experience with specific information. Otherwise, they don’t know how much and could potentially get bored.

Use specific units of measurement like percentages or weights. You’ll add credibility and clarity to your writing making it easier for readers to digest the content.

Always | Never

Rather than exaggerate your statements, use words that modify.

For  the word ‘always‘ use words like “most” or “many” or “frequently.”

For the word ‘never‘ tone down your statement with “few” or “rare” or “occasional.”

When you don’t have exact data use these modifiers rather than distorting facts.

Entirely | Completely

Remove these words. They act as fillers. If you want to illustrate completeness, use descriptive words.

Describe an image with a phrase like ‘The cup is full to the brim with hot coffee.’

Use your words to paint a picture in the reader’s mind.

Absolutely

This adds unnecessary redundancy to your statement. You’re just adding fluff words at this point.

For example, ‘He took the absolutely final step across the finish line.’ “Final” means final.

This is one of those words that appear in casual conversation with people but has no place in written content.

When it comes to

Leave it out. Change a weak sentence to a strong statement.

Transform ‘When it comes to swimming, the ocean is my favorite’ to ‘Swimming in the ocean is my favorite.’

You’ll change an otherwise wordy sentence into a strong statement.

Kind of | Sort of

These phrases make your writing sound uncertain and question your confidence. Be bold. Say what you mean. Your writing is meant to convince readers.

These phrases only weaken your message.

As a matter of fact

Don’t even think about using this phrase. You don’t need it to introduce a statement. Make your point in one clear sentence.

Like we said above; be bold and say what you mean.

Very

Instead of attempting to elevate an adjective, use a stronger one.

For example, change ‘a very bright day’ to ‘a day with brilliant sunshine.’

This not only increases the impact of your sentence, but it paints that picture in the reader’s mind and immerses them into your writing. That’s what you want.

Conclusion

These words and phrases have one thing in common: a call to specifics. The purpose of your content is to inform, educate, and convert. Visitors to your website or blog respond to information presented in clear concise statements.

When asking how to improve your writing skills, start by removing filler words and phrases. Instead of focusing on your word count, focus on the quality of the words. As you edit your content, consider each word. If it does not add to the meaning, get rid of it. Then work to make your content strong.

You’ll end up with strong, confident, and clear content that speaks to your readers.

By Published On: April 23, 2021Categories: Writing How-To

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