There are toxic words that we should not use . Some of them are negative for us because they are limiting terms that prevent us from advancing and developing, others are not very specific and others can damage the self-esteem of the person we are telling.

As psychologist Montse Luján Treviño states: “The way we use language affects others, because we can sink someone or cause a change in attitudes according to what we say”.

We are what we say

Words have a positive or negative effect on ourselves and others. Catherine Pratt, author of the book “Dealing with Negative People,” says that negative people can cause others to feel exhausted or even depressed. The fact is that the words we use not only affect other individuals, but also speak a lot about us . As the popular saying goes, “language is the reflection of our thoughts”.

Toxic words also have consequences on our own image and on how others see us. People want to surround themselves with positive people and avoid those people who make us feel bad and who project negativity. In addition, toxic words are also limiting words, in the sense that they limit our personal development and do not allow us to achieve success.

A list of toxic words

But, what are the toxic words? what are the negative words?

There are a number of terms that we should not use as part of our language. They are as follows.

1. Incompetent

There are words that when someone receives them make him feel like a klutz and an inept person. That’s why you should avoid calling someone incompetent. Why? Because every person has a series of virtues and defects, and can be good at some tasks but not others .

For example, the same person is not good at working as a waiter, but can have a great command of new technologies and is an excellent web programmer. To avoid using the word incompetent when it comes to work or studies, it is always advisable to encourage this individual to find his or her true passion. He may not be good at that job, but there will be another job where he will fit right in and where he can exploit his skills.

2. Rare

Individuals can have many prejudices and become defensive about what does not fit into our mental schemes. There are many cultures with their ways of thinking and their values and customs, and this is what makes our world so varied, rich and diverse. W hen we say that someone is weird, we are saying that we are the normal , when, in fact, we are all different.

If you are one of those who calls someone strange and suffers some kind of problem, you should be thankful for the luck you had in being born into a good family and enjoying good health. Life can be very unfair to some people.

3. I need you

This phrase, if used in a relationship, refers to emotional dependence. It is used by people who have low self-esteem and who get hooked on a relationship even though it is toxic. When someone has a high self-esteem they do not need anyone to be happy , because the partner is a complement and is not everything to him or her.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with enjoying the company of a loved one, or expressing that love that you feel. However, confusing this with normalizing the fact that one depends on the other (with all that this implies) can cause one to fall into a kind of small cult based on two people.

4. I can’t

“I can’t” is one of those limiting words that make it impossible for you to take action and are paralyzing . Except in extreme cases, effort and perseverance will allow you to reach your goals, as long as these goals are realistic and you know how to manage your resources. But it must be clear that many times, the greatest barrier between yourself and achievable goals is self-sabotage thinking, created as an excuse not to get out of your comfort zone.

5. I must, I must not

“Should or shouldn’t” has to do with a set of social beliefs or what others tell you to do. You are the only person who knows what motivates you and what will make you happy. So now you can erase from your personal dictionary this word or phrases like: I must get married, I must be a doctor, etc. Better to use this: “I want to be a fireman” or “I want to travel” .

6. Impossible

This word is similar to “can’t”, and as stated above, except for some cases, realistic goals can be achieved . More than impossible, it would be better to say: “it is difficult but not impossible.”

The point is that although in practice there are things that cannot be done in a given time and with the resources available, we very often use the concept of impossibility to stay put, not to make an effort to progress.

7. Hate

Hate is a negative emotion that encourages aggression and violence . According to the psychologist Manuel Vitutia in the Huffington Post, “This emotion robs us of peace and leaves us with nothing else to enjoy. Feeling hatred is like suffering from an ulcer. We will not achieve anything by telling someone that we hate them. It’s always better to accept and move on without grudges.

8. Boring

There are always things to do, if you are bored it is because you have a not very rich life . Instead of sitting on the couch watching TV, you’d better go for a walk, a run or read an interesting book on psychology like these: “The 30 best books on psychology that you can’t miss”.

9. Angry

Anger is often a reaction that we regret . For example, when we are in a relationship and we explode because of something stupid, then it is time to apologize for our reaction and acknowledge that it was not that bad. Experts say that anger is a secondary reaction that often hides insecurity, fear or sadness. Therefore, if you are going to get angry, first analyze if there is no other cause for your anger.

10. Guilt

Blaming others can also mask our own insecurities , and can avoid acknowledging that we are also guilty. In fact, it is easier to blame the other person than to reflect deeply on your part of the blame.

11. Ugly

We live in a society that highly values the physical aspect of people and in which a culture of image predominates . And not everyone has physical features that make them fall in love. But that doesn’t give you the right to despise someone for that reason, because they may have other important qualities within them. Calling someone ugly can hurt them a lot, and that’s why we should erase it from our dictionary.

12. Useless

Calling someone useless is like calling them incompetent . It is a degrading insult that should be avoided at all costs. At work, if you think someone doesn’t have the necessary qualities to perform that function, let them know but encourage them to do something else. I’m sure you can bring out their talents in another way.

13. Failure

The word failure should be deleted from the personal dictionary , because it is a limiting word and therefore interferes negatively with personal development. Failures are experiences from which one can learn and are very enriching experiences.

14. Bad

Calling someone bad is unspecific . Also, whether something is good or bad can be debatable. For example, there are people who think that having sex with more than one person is bad even though it is not really so.

Likewise, we can call someone bad simply because they do not treat us as we would like. To give another example, if our partner leaves us, the pain will make us see her as a bad person, because it is the resentment that is manifesting itself.