2. Use Jargon with Care

Speak to your listener’s level

A few years ago, I went to a doctor I hadn’t seen before. He marched into the examining room in his white “I’m the doctor” coat, peered at his file folder, and said, “I’ve reviewed your records, and you appear to be unremarkable.”

In my mind, I slugged him—and would have actually done so (verbally, at least), except that I felt too undignified sitting there in the hospital gown they make you wear so that you feel too undignified to slug the doctor. Instead, I thought about what he said.

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Moments later, I realized that his use of seemingly everyday language really was medical jargon for “based ...

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