Simplicity is Key

“The supreme and imperative facet of the dissemination of instruction is to guarantee correct perception by the population; contrarily, it would be extraneous.”

Excuse me?… That just sounded like English from a different planet. Let’s try that again:

“The most important aspect of communication is to ensure your audience understands what you are saying; otherwise, it would be pointless.”

Much better, right? Unfortunately, a lot of people mistakenly believe that using complex words and jargon will make them seem smarter. From our example above, you can see that this is far from the truth. On the contrary, according to a Nobel prize-winning psychologist, Daniel Kahneman, people who are considered credible and intelligent actually replace complex language with simple words. It takes courage to use simple words.

Here are a few advantages of simplifying your words:

  1. There is no uncertainty
  2. It is easier to understand
  3. You will be perceived as more authentic
  4. It is faster to read and write

Ways to write more simply:

  1. Shorten your sentences
  2. Use short and simple words
  3. Shorten paragraphs
  4. Don’t use abbreviations or jargon unnecessarily
  5. Use lists

Remember, effective communication is when the reader or listener understands your message; and simplicity is key!


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