This Phrase Destroys Your Credibility.

And Many of Us Use It Daily.

Kristy Bertenshaw
2 min readNov 22, 2022


What do you think when you hear someone tell you, “I will try”, when you ask them to do something? Will they do it? What do you think their likelihood of success is?

Those people have given themselves permission to fail. No matter what happens, they can always claim that they tried. But they are not fooling us or anyone else: cue eye-roll, diminished trust and credibility dip.

Try is a weak word.
Try is a dangerous word that goes undetected in our everyday language.
It presumes,
It predicts,
It’s a precipice,

To failing.

When we ask someone to try,
When we say we will try,
We presuppose failure.

Try is such a part of our habitual language patterns that it is easy to find ourselves using it.
Try is a way for us to say we will do something but not attempt to figure out the specific required action and when we will take it.

So what can you do instead?
You can change your language.

Instead of saying, “I’ll try and do XXXX”,
Ask yourself the most straightforward, effective action you could take, and schedule it in your diary.
What’s in the diary gets done.

Ultimately, for things to be different,
We need to be different.
We need to take different action.
We need to change our language choices.
Language creates and shapes our experience of the world and all that is possible in it.

People who achieve their goals, outcomes and are people we know, like and trust—aka, are credible—never say I will try. Instead, they say I will do something, or better yet, I must do whatever the action is.

And we want to do business & have long-term relationships with people we find credible—people that we know, like and trust.



Kristy Bertenshaw

I love to write bite-sized stories, essays & poetry. Revenue Generation & Growth Specialist | Passionate About Using Technology & Storytelling to Drive Results.