“I just want to let you know …”

Have you used this opening in one of your business emails recently? Are you a woman?

I personally have found myself using an opening like this when I don’t want to appear too pushy. It’s supposed to be a “gentle” reminder that I still need something from you.

Today I want to link to an excellent article that implies that when we use “just” in that way, we put ourselves on a rank below the person we are talking to, as if we were asking for permission to intrude their thoughts. Instinctively, I feel that there is some merit to this and that my email would sound more confident if I presented a fact rather than a meek whisper, a plea, a tugging at your shirt-sleeve to please listen to me.

Read this article for yourself and see what you think:


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