candidly, i’m tired of “honestly”

At the risk of slipping into the curmudgeon category, I need to get this off my chest. I really started noticing a few months ago how many people tell me something, “Honestly.” They preface a statement with “Honestly…”

As in “Honestly, here’s what you should do…”

Or “Honestly, this is the situation…”

Or “Well, honestly, I think this is…”

What raises my hackles is that the implication is there’s a lack of honesty the rest of the time. I know that’s not what they mean. And in most situations, I know they’re not liars.

But, if you preface some comments with “honestly” and some without it, you’re pretty much signaling that you don’t tell the truth all of the time.

Words count. So, candidly, please be careful about saying “honestly.”

I love to hear what you think…honestly or candidly or however.


Steve Thomas
Partner, Oneicity

(photo credit: discoodoni)

Steve Thomas

Steve Thomas

6 thoughts on “candidly, i’m tired of “honestly””

  1. @Steve–Does that mean if I don’t have a firetruck I’m not OK with you? Couldn’t resist. I’d like to see you guys at CLA Orlando next year. Keep up the great writing.

  2. I wonder if people are replacing the term “frankly” with “honestly” because it is has a softer impact on the ears or eyes–but then it suffers from overuse. Does the use of “frankly” get under people’s skin as well, or “candidly” for that matter? Do they all have the same connotations, even? It gives interesting thought to the power of words. Honestly!

  3. @Byron–well, the firetruck would help…but I guess, honestly, the firetruck isn’t necessary.
    Glad to hear you’ll be at CLA next year. Thanks for the encouragement. You’re the best.
    st

  4. @Jenni–you’re probably right…I know that most people don’t really mean “honestly.” and “frankly” is what most mean.
    Great to hear from you. Honestly! And Candidly!
    st

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