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Shelley Emling Headshot

Enough Already! 3 Overused Phrases That Drive Me Crazy

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In 2012, everyone seemed to have a "bucket list" or go on a "date night" or issue a "spoiler alert" or argue that something or other "isn't rocket science." And the whole world seemed not to give a "rat's ass" about falling off a "fiscal cliff." Thankfully, you don't hear these overused terms today as much as you did last year. But unfortunately there are more overused terms to replace them in 2013. And, as always, they tend to drive me up the wall.

Last week, I wrote about four common mispronunciations that make me nuts. And a few days before that I wrote about three common language mistakes that do the same. Today I'm pointing out three overused phrases I wish would die a quick death.

What do you think? Let us know in comments.

1. It is what it is.

This was an overused phrase two years ago -- and it's still making the rounds. But what does it mean? Did someone say something wasn't what it appeared to be so that you have to respond by saying "it is what it is?" Tell me what it really is! By saying "it is what it is," you are really telling me you have nothing truly substantial to contribute to the conversation.

2. Circle back.

This falls into the category of irritating office jargon, where it sits alongside "synergy," "hard stop," outside the box" and "let's take this offline." Yes, I know circling back means to return to a topic, but it sounds wonky. (Wait, is that another overused term?) Meanwhile, check out this 2011 survey of the most overused office jargon.

3. I or we or they don't have enough bandwidth.

The first time I heard this, I thought it was a sort of distinctive expression. Now that I've heard it 100 times, I'm begging you to let the techies keep the word "bandwidth" to themselves. Instead of saying you don't have enough bandwidth, why not just plainly admit you don't have the physical or mental capacity to do something? And then, instead of saying "it is what it is," tell me why.

What phrases do you want to put out to pasture? After all, the above is just my two cents -- literally. LOL.

Earlier on Huff/Post50:

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