SURVEY SAYS: The Most Annoying Word or Phrase

Recently we covered a poll that found “whatever” to be the most annoying word for Americans.

Last week, I asked NewsDash readers, “What word or phrase do you find MOST annoying?”

Among the list provided, “like” garnered the most responses, at 20.6%. This was followed by “It is what it is,” and “No offense, but,” with 9.5% of responses each. “I know right,” was selected by 7.94% of responding readers, while 3.2% each selected “Whatever,” “It’s all good,” and “I can’t even.” Nearly 2% chose “No worries.”

However, 41.3% of readers entered their own responses. Those included:

  • Will do
  • seriously….really
  • To be honest with you . . . .
  • “at the end of the day” (added by multiple readers)
  • Welcome to my world
  • Not a problem.
  • Annoying
  • Awesome
  • Make America Great Again
  • Reach out
  • So
  • What it is, is……(not to be confused with “It is what it is”)
  • “Look” when used by a politician.
  • You know
  • you know what I mean?
  • I know a lot about…
  • Dahhhhhh……..
  • No problem (added by more than one reader)
  • melty and sammy
  • Do you need help with that?
  • I don’t care
  • hashtag #!

In comments left by readers, many explained their pick, and even more suggestions for annoying words or phrases were offered. A couple noted that the proper response to “Thank you” is “You’re welcome,” and not “No problem.” Editor’s Choice is a tie this week between the reader who said, “Like, at the end of the day, I can’t even wrap my head around this low hanging fruit but we can move the needle to maximize the net equation. It is what it is, and it’s all good,” and the reader who said, “After reading your list, I realized that I use several of these words. Who knew I was so annoying?!” 

Thank you to all who participated in the survey!


I find the people who always use this phrase to respond, do not do...

My most annoying phrase is, "To be honest with you". Really? I actually prefer that you lie to me . . .

said in response to any complaint from me

It's not on your list and not likely to appear among 'other' responses but, I'd nominate "not my fault" since, clearly, it's the most unproductive CYA we've heard for far too long now.

The phrase "Not a problem" drives me flipping crazy, because usually there is a problem.

Hard to pick just one.

chances are, if you start your statement with "no offense, but" what follows is about to be offensive.

The listed words/phrases don't particularly annoy me; the word annoying annoys me. In my world, it appears everything annoys millennials. Quit yer complainin' and buck up buttercup!

"Like" has got to be the worst!

I hate to hear the word "so" to begin a sentence. It is a throw-a-way similar to "uh". It is hard to choose the most annoying, because "Like" and "Whatever" are right up there with the annoyance factor as well.

Hate it. I grew up in the South where people responded to a "thank you" with "you're welcome". "No worries" is very impersonal and very insincere. "Like" is the second worst.

"north of" to describe "more than."

"what it is, is" often pops up as an explanatory phrase to describe a process or function. What it does do is simply murder my ears.

I chose "Look" when used by a politician because I've noticed that whenever a politician begins a sentence with the word, it almost always is a prelude to a big lie or dog whistle.

I'm tired of all the new terms (bandwidth, funnel, etc.) that are used by business people to be 'cool'.

Verbatim (cont.) 

Like, at the end of the day, I can't even wrap my head around this low hanging fruit but we can move the needle to maximize the net equation. It is what it is, and it's all good.

How about "your guyses"? "Is this your guyses dog?" Nails on a chalkboard!

How does anyone know what I know?

Also the misuse of words such as loan versus borrow, can or may is annoying. Q: Can I use this cup? A: Well, I'm sure you are capable of using a cup. Q: May I use this cup? A: Yes, you may use this cup to get a drink of water.

It also irritates me when people say, "I could care less." Oh, so you DO care.

Most of the given phrases are so common now that they actually make sense. It would be interesting to see a translation of what should be said instead.

I hate it when I am talking to someone and they come out with the DAHHHHHHHH... Like I am dumb because everyone knows that or it is so obvious anyone could see that!

After reading your list, I realized that I use several of these words. Who knew I was so annoying?!

There's also the sentence - "I could care less"....augh - COULDN'T care less....

I always have an almost overwhelming urge to fire someone when they use this phrase.

These commercials that talk about "melty" cheese. Really? And since when did the word sandwich get boiled down to "sammy"? Again, really?

Offers of help are backhanded statements of incompetence.

Nothing is more annoying when you ask someone their opinion and the response is "I don't care", only to hear later that they are HOT because you didn't go with what they wanted!

When I say "Thank You" and the response should be "You're welcome" not "No problem."


NOTE: Responses reflect the opinions of individual readers and not necessarily the stance of Asset International or its affiliates.