Last night at a New Year’s Eve party, we played a game where each person was given a necklace. The point of the game was not to say the word “no”. If you got someone to say it, then you got their necklace. (You only got one if they had multiple) The person with the most necklaces at the end of the night gets a prize. So all night we hear yelling and angry “dang it!’s” from the other room or our room for that matter, and we realized how much we say the word “no”.
Ironically, today at my Grandma’s house, we also played a game very similar. Instead of necklaces, it was clothespins. And the banned word was much harder than no- it was “I”. But there was a catch to this version: in order to get a clothespin you’d have to say “gracias” before they could catch themselves with an “ayeyeye”. After this game was halfway through, I was neck and neck with my step-dad, but both of us lost to my Uncle Mark. We started talking about how much we realize we use certain words so frequently until we can’t say them.
So from this, I challenge you to expand your vocabulary beyond the 20 frequently used words, like instead of saying “no”, you could say “I disincline to acquiesce to your request” (as quoted from Pirates of the Caribbean). Though I must admit that there are seldom any synonyms for “I”. Make it a New Year’s Resolution to strengthen your choice in words, you won’t regret it!