Does ‘fairly unique’ or ‘it is what it is’ irritate you?

Communicators share the top 10 phrases that annoy them the most.

Last winter, members weighed in on a Oxford University list of the top 10 most irritating phrases. According to Oxford, those phrases are:

MyRagan-ites offered dozens more that grated on their nerves, including “it is what it is.” So, combining utter subjectivity and zero science, I cobbled those annoying phrases into another list—your 10 most irritating phrases.

1. “It is what it is.” The least popular of the irritating phrases mentioned by MyRagan members is also the most Zen-like. At least that’s what the people using it want you to think. The term is actually a dodge, and not a very artful one at that. It’s the philosophical equivalent to “no comment.”

2. “I know, right?” Speakers use this phrase—a question, actually—to agree with a statement. And it reveals insecurity. Perhaps that explains why 20-somethings favor it. The speaker is looking for validation, an approving nod maybe, because he doesn’t truly believe he’s right. Next time someone uses this phrase, don’t nod.

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