The common words used by the average people

I remember learning the word, “okay,” as a
child and marveling at its versatility. It has
such a broad meaning that you can use it in
many contexts, and as a kid working to
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communicate with a limited vocabulary, being
able to say “okay” carried me through all
sorts of scenarios.
As I’ve gotten older, my feelings about the
word have changed. Where saying “okay”
used to give me freedom, now it holds me
back. I’ve learned that in most cases, it’s not
okay to say, “OK.”
Okay has become a toxic cop out
Sure, you can say “ok” in almost any
situation. For example:
“How was the article?” “It’s okay.”
“How was that candidate?” “She was
“How’s your life?” “It’s okay.”
Saying that something is okay doesn’t tell us
much about it. Usually it means that
something is satisfactory, but it’s not
especially good. It’s a way to avoid conflict
by failing to offer meaningful feedback. It
allows us to avoid committing to authentic
When we say something is okay, we
stop thinking
Not only does referring to something as okay
keep us from providing a valuable
assessment of the thing in question, but it
keeps us from thinking about how to make
that thing better.
Instead of trouble shooting and finding
solutions, we check the “okay” box and
move on to more interesting pursuits. When
someone comes to us looking for feedback,
telling them that something is okay doesn’t
give them any idea about how to improve.
Labelling everything as “okay”
makes you boring
Something that is just okay needs more
work. People who label things in this manner
are providing a lazy answer. Okay is a boring
answer to a host of interesting questions, and
it’s up to you to do better.
Communication is a two-way street. A
person who asks for your honest opinion
about a subject doesn’t want to hear that
something is okay. You might as well say
your opinion on all things is, “meh,” because
you’re just that uninspiring.
“Okay” connotes a lack of ideas or an
unwillingness to contribute something more
substantial to the conversation. If everything
is just okay all the time, the people who talk
to you will grow bored. They’d get more
feedback talking to the wall. You’ve made it
their sole responsibility to keep the
conversation afloat, which can be tiresome.
Saying “okay” too often makes
people feel that you’re too agreeable
You can be easy to work with and disagree
with people sometimes. When an idea is
taking shape, you want all kinds of feedback
and some push-back so that you can create
something excellent. A collaborator who says
that something is okay is simply saying that
they don’t have a strong opposition to the
idea. They may not love it, but it’s not
worthwhile enough to improve.
You may think that you’re being nice when
you label things as okay, but you’re not doing
anyone any favors. “Okay” can be downright
dishonest if you don’t like an idea that much,
but at the very least, it is not helpful. A
person who comes to you with an idea would
love new insights or constructive feedback. It
already takes so much to ask for feedback.
Don’t deprive someone who values your
opinion of the perspective that you could
Maybe you are nervous that you’ll offend
someone. Giving actual feedback may feel
risky, but when someone asks for it, honesty
is the best policy. When you make a non-
committal remark like, “It’s okay,” you’ve
revealed your overly cautious mindset.
Give concrete feedback instead
when you want to say “okay”
“Okay” isn’t helping your communication
skills. Erase it from your vocabulary, and
work on offering your true opinion. It may
take some practice to feel good about this
new way of expressing yourself, but your
friends and colleagues will appreciate your
honesty. For example:
“How’s the article?”
“The ideas in this article are average. Try to
use more exciting subheadings and provide
some attention-grabbing visual elements so
that readers will want to keep reading it.”
“How’s the candidate?”
“She passed our initial evaluation, and her


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