5 Things to Avoid Saying When Experiencing a Difficult Time

Words That Will Not Serve You When Dealing With Challenging Situations

There are things to avoid saying when experiencing a difficult time, if we want to deal with our situation better.

Whenever we experience a difficult time, if we’re not mindful of the language we use, we will generate unhealthy emotions.

Reasons to Pay More Attention to Your Words During a Difficult Time

The words we use, communicate what we’re thinking and feeling. We should pay more attention to our words during difficult times because they will:

  • Affect our attitude.
  • Determine the actions we take.
  • Impact how we communicate with others.
  • Affect our productivity levels.
  • Influence how we deal with our problems.

If we use empowering words, we’re more likely to handle our challenges with the right attitude. Changing the words we use during a difficult time can change how we view our experiences.

things to avoid saying when experiencing a difficult

Many years ago, I experienced severe back pain. That was caused by playing different sports, which affected my mobility. I found it difficult to sit for long periods and had to constantly stretch and move.

Still in my early twenties, I didn’t fully appreciate how the words I was using affected my experience. I’d complain about the pain I experienced and didn’t take proper care of myself. The thoughts I had caused me to believe I wouldn’t overcome my back problem.

It was only when I used positive affirmations, practiced releasing techniques and did strengthening exercises, that I overcame the problem. It took a few years to recover fully.

I’m convinced that had I been more aware of my words, I would have recovered a lot quicker.

5 Things to Avoid Saying When Experiencing a Difficult Time

Paying attention to the words you say requires intelligence and a high level of self-awareness. It’s especially important when dealing with challenges.

Here are five things to avoid saying when experiencing a difficult time. These words will not help you deal with your situation from an empowered state.

  1. Why do things like this always happen to me? The key word here is “always.” That implies only bad things happen to you.
  2. I don’t know if I can deal with this. Another way of saying this is, “It’s all too much for me.” The truth is you can deal any situation in your life if you believe you can. Having a strong self-belief is essential to overcome your challenges.
  3. What is wrong with me? A variation of this is, “I am such a loser.” If you criticise or judge yourself a lot, it is difficult to cope with your challenges well.
  4. I can never do anything right. Just like everyone else, you’ve made mistakes and will continue to make mistakes. The word “never” implies you haven’t done things right in life, which is incorrect.
  5. I should just get over this. Denying how you feel isn’t a healthy way to process emotions. To say to yourself, “Just get over it,” implies it’s not okay to feel or experience what you’re going through.


Our words are powerful. We have to always be vigilant with what we’re saying, how we’re saying it or who we’re saying it to.

If we learn to change the way we describe difficult times or problems, our experience of them will also change. A better alternative is to view our problems or difficult times as challenges to overcome.

Action Step: Reflect on a challenge or difficult situation you’re experiencing at the moment. Capture the thoughts you have about it and the words you are using to describe it. If you are using disempowering words, change them to more inspiring or uplifting words.

Question: What are other things to avoid saying when experiencing a difficult time?