Stop thinking!

Have you ever noticed how women often start a comment with, “I think…?”  As in, “I think we should consider blah, blah, blah.”  Or, “I think the problem is…”  Or, “I think, the way to go would be…”  This is particularly true in professional settings, such as meetings.

Psychologists would tell us this is because women are hesitant to say what what they want to say, so they soften it with “I think.”  We couldn’t possibly be capable of making a declaration or offering a valuable perspective, right?  When you preface your statement with “I think,” you leave the door open for the next person to say, “I think (the opposite)” or “I think (you’re wrong.)”  And if they do, you’re safe because you qualified your statement with “I think.”

Until recently, I was guilty of prefacing my statements with “I think” or some other buffer.  When I began noticing this trait in other women and recognized how it weakened whatever they said after it, I made a conscious effort to remove it from my speech. 

The next time you’re in a meeting, stop and think before you say, “I think.”  If it’s worth saying, don’t put any qualifiers around it.  Start your sentence with, well, just say what you want to say. 




1 Response to “Stop thinking!”

  1. 1 Moodz4Modernz May 30, 2008 at 1:54 am

    I’m fifty-one. It’s not about age or getting old. It’s about being content. Not passive, not as in accepting some unhappy “lot” in life.

    I’m gonna blog about this!

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