Monday, March 21st 2016 – The Word Umm

People here in Canada have lately been commenting on my speech and vocabulary. They are surprised to hear that some one from ‘Straya’ speaks so clearly and pronounces things, I guess in comparison to maybe other Australian’s they may have come across.

I know for a while when I was younger, especially when I had braces on my teeth during my teen years, I spoke with a bit of a lisp. I hated it so I would work on my pronunciation to get rid of the lisp.

I also had a problem with the saying the word ‘umm’, like all the time…!!! I just never knew it.


The word Umm is an interesting word. I like to think of it as a bad word.

A few years ago, I had been asked to be a speaker for a fundraising event for Camp Quality. I happily accepted but was also in the middle of a huge fundraising event of my own for local charities that I was raising money for through the V8 Ambassador program in Bathurst.

Before I knew it, the night of the Camp Quality fundraiser had come around and I had my notes ready to go, but didn’t feel 100% prepared.

I stepped up to the mike on the night and talked about my story.

A few days later, a friend sent me the video of the speech and I’ll be honest, I was mortified. Every second word was ‘umm’. It sounded so unprofessional and so unconfident.

I was determined from that day on to remove the word ‘umm’ from my vocabulary.

It was difficult at first, but because I knew I was about to say it, I could begin to stop myself every time I felt I was about to say it.

The best advice I can give to anyone who wants to remove ‘umm’ from their vocabulary, is to catch yourself every time you say it. Be aware.

One day, you will just notice that you no longer say it. I also speak a lot slower now so that when I am speaking to guests at work, I can not only be heard correctly for the guests sake, it also helps because the bad word ‘umm’, is so unnecessary.





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