Why Give a Damn:

Language and your use of it is one of the most powerful instruments you have to create specific outcomes. For instance, you have a certain amount of time each day, where you choose to spend it demonstrates your true priorities.

The author of this post, Pascal Finette, is Director, Office of the Chair at Mozilla. His focus is on expanding the scope of Mozilla into new constituencies and supporting Mozilla’s Chairperson with the ongoing work of modernizing Mozilla project governance structures, raising Mozilla’s visibility globally, and generally governing the Mozilla project.

Human language is at least half a million years old, written communication somewhere in the range of 5,000+ years. And language is powerful: Whole empires were built and fell by the power of words.

And language is not only powerful in an outward facing fashion but probably even more so in your personal use of it.

Let me explain: We are all busy. Too busy. And often we find ourselves saying to our teams, friends, family and partners: “I don’t have time”. Now – turn that sentence around and be honest to yourself: You do have time, you just chose to spend it on something else. So you should really say: “It is not a priority for me”. See what that does?

You do have time, you just chose to spend it on something else

Now try this: “I don’t exercise because my health is not a priority.” If these phrases don’t sit well, that’s the whole point. Changing your language reminds you that time is a choice. If you don’t like it, you can change it. It’s your choice.

A Burning Question:

How many times do you language as an excuse to mask your own decision making? Observe, change and see what happens to you.

Pascal Finette

Author Pascal Finette

Pascal is the Managing Director of Singularity University's Startup Lab. He is also an entrepreneur, coach, and speaker who has worked in Internet powerhouses, such as eBay, Mozilla, and Google, and Venture Capital—starting both a VC firm and accelerator program.

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