Just

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by wegs, Mar 11, 2021.

  1. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,922
    Ran across an article recently, discussing the overuse of the word ''just'' in business emails. The author suggested breaking away from this word choice, as it may come across as lacking confidence. (on the part of the email sender) Hadn't really thought of it that way, but thinking about it now, I'll use ''just'' if I've second guessed an idea. According to linguistic ''experts,'' just leave just ...out of the sentence, altogether. It doesn't change the overall context of the sentence, whatsoever. ''My firm is hopeful of just making an introduction...'' as opposed to ''My firm is hopeful of making an introduction.'' Both sentences seem fine, but the first one could come across as lacking confidence, I suppose.

    So, do you find yourself overusing this word ''just'' in business emails or even in everyday conversation? If so, do you agree with the connection between using the word (as opposed to not using it) as a lack of confidence on your part?
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2021
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  3. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    I don't use it like that and hadn't noticed that it was being used a lot. I do agree that it shows a lack of confidence in the way you are describing it, if I can just point that out.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!



    One thing that drives me crazy is the way many/most journalists now seem to start their reponses with "So".

    TV host "Now I'm going to bring in Jane Smith, National Political Reporter for the NY Times. Jane, what is going on in Congress today?".

    Jane Smith "So, Congress is considering the Covid Relief Bill this morning".

    TV host "Jane, what are the chances that it's going to pass without revision?"

    Jane Smith "So, it's likely that the Senate will want to make some minor changes"

    Just leave off "so" when you start to speak...

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    It's no better than "um" and it's just a quirk to give you time to think.
     
    wegs likes this.
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  5. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    I also notice that the UK version of "um" is "em"

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  7. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,922
    ha That's so true! It's very catchy though, and I've been hearing it often on weekly calls with my work team. When it's someone's turn to speak about what's new and exciting in their department, invariably the person begins with ''Yea...so...we completed this awesome project last week...'' The response ''Oh, that's great, can you tell us the details?'' ''So, I can't really share the details with you right now, but soon...''

    I'm wondering if (like just), it serves as a way of getting a point across without being direct. (if that makes sense)
     
  8. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 71 years old Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    11,092
    The UK version is correct version

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
    wegs likes this.
  9. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    I think it's just a "lazy" quirk, just like "um".

    I do hate those kinds of meetings/calls though where everyone is supposed to be "excited" or "enthused" to share "what great things you have going on!"

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!



    "Wegs, who heads up our Scotch Tape market in Asia is up next. Wegs what exciting things have you got for us in the Scotch Tape market in Hong Kong?"

    Wegs "Thanks for asking! I'm really excited about the growth rate of our Magic Tape brand in Hong Kong and Macau and not to let the cat out of the bag but let me share that we see really good things coming up in the next quarter for our Double Sided Tape but I'll share more in our next meeting!"
     
    wegs likes this.
  10. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    Em, are you sure? So, you are saying that em is the correct way to stutter?

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  11. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    "Wegs, we're seeing great things from you. I'd like to present you with a microphone headset and I'd like you to come up on stage and "cheer lead" for us on our next new product introduction. What do you say!"
     
    wegs likes this.
  12. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,922
    But ....then there’s Nike with its slogan “Just do it.” Not sure “Do it,” would have caught on. Hmm.
     
  13. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    I like that slogan but the slogan isn't "It's just that we'd like you to do it"

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  14. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,922
    I quit!

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  15. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    "Now Wegs, with you in charge of our tapes portfolio the sky is the limit. I see masking tape being a great addition to your region. We'll discuss it more at our corporate retreat next month and I want to put you in charge of team building!"

    Come to my office later tonight for drinks and we'll (cough cough) talk about it.
     
  16. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,922
    Lol This reminds me too of empty phrases that are overused and mean nothing:

    “We don’t need to boil the ocean.” (don’t overthink things)

    “That’s another arrow in our quiver.” (another tool to benefit our clients)

    “We need to think about the optics.”

    “Where the rubber meets the road.”

    Juuuust stop.
     
    Seattle likes this.
  17. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 71 years old Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    11,092
    It is a filler not a stutter

    Not that I give, or even gave, many talks but if I gave them and I wanted to think about a reply I would go for the holding chin with head down and short pacing going "Emmmmmmm", occasionally stopping to look upward snap fingers and index finger in air

    One time I got asked what I was doing

    Well of course Emmmmmmm was my brain computing and if I didn't walk it would overheat

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  18. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    Then there are the phrases that do mean something but they are still a misdirection.

    Car dealer "What are you looking to spend? What's it going to take to get you into a car? What kind of payment are you looking for?" "Do you need financing" "What would you like to get for your old car"
    "When can we get you down here for a test drive?".

    Translation...we want to sell you a car and will do anything to do so. We also want to get as much of your money as possible while trying to be your buddy.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
    wegs likes this.
  19. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,922
    That has to be a tough job. Carvana capitalized on the drudgery most people have when it comes to dealing with car dealerships and their sales ''tactics.''

    By the way, you sound convincing. This could be a side-hustle for you.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  20. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    20,035
    And in kids.

    "Just" is our kids favorite word.

    "Time to turn off the computer!"
    "OK but I just have to . . ."

    "Time to put your shoes on."
    "I will but I just have to . . ."

    "What are you doing with the hammer?"
    "I'm just . . ."
     
    wegs likes this.
  21. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,922
    haha Your kids know what they're doing.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!



    It's a ''power'' word according to this article:
    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/ambigamy/201811/just-four-letter-word-use-cautiously
     
  22. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    9,102
    Erm, not it's not.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!


    Honestly, I've literally never seen it spelt as "em" (prior to this thread). It is either "erm" or "um". And yes, I did just literally use the word "literally" in the correct way in the previous sentence.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!



    As for "just"... it has a few meanings, depending on context.
    The first, where they use "just", might mean that that is the lowest expectation - and intended to mean as much. In this sense one might use "at least" instead.

    "I've literally just said that to my Manager!" - "just" means "in the immediate past".

    "That's just what our firm could do with!" - "just" means "exactly".

    Could it come across as lacking confidence? Possibly, in some contexts.
     
    wegs likes this.
  23. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,360
    I didn't say anything about how it was spelled. I'm talking about the way it's pronounced and the way I've heard it from UK speakers is "em" more like "m".
     

Share This Page