There are a million things people can say to each other that would be a complete turnoff, but we’re not going to cover them all because you already know all of those since they’re obvious. We’re going to instead focus on three words in every day English that can be misused and should never be used in this context on someone you really like.  

#1 Cute
This kind of compliment feels backhanded. Anyone who has worked hard to build their business and career never wants to be told what they’ve done is cute. Especially men! I heard a story from a very successful businesswoman, Marie Forleo whose company helps 1000s of women entrepreneurs and has interviewed people such as Oprah Winfrey and Tony Robbins for her youtube video series. She was telling a guy about her company and how she helps women. He made a comment about how it was cute she had her own company.  Being told your life’s work and passion is cute is not a compliment.

#2 Sensitive
Saying someone is “sensitive” has a time in place, but say someone tells you something you said to them bothered them. They’re opening up to you and revealing their feelings. If you say something like, “you’re being sensitive” undermines and invalidates their feelings and will make them shut down in the future.

#3 Funny
Saying someone is funny can backfire. Say someone is telling you a story about something they’re passionate about. They’re enthusiastic and showing you they’re inner values. If you say they’re “funny” when they’ve just divulged something they’re impassioned about will make them regret ever talking about it. Instead of feeling connected to you right now they just feel like an idiot.

What other words have you found to be misused and in what context? Leave them in the comments below.