Three words

What three words would you use to describe yourself? It’s a hard question, don’t you think?

At a recent job interview my daughter was asked to describe herself in just three words. I don’t think she was given any time to think about it, but her description of herself was interesting. She described herself as bossy, efficient and collaborative, all of which are true, but if she’d had a bit more time she could easily have added smart, funny, beautiful and kind, and these things would have been true as well.

I thought this might be a useful exercise for my team at work but when I broached the idea they misunderstood and thought I was asking them to describe me in three words. I was dismayed to find that the first thing they thought of to describe me was “grammar nazi”.

No, no, no! This is not how I want people to think of me. I like writing and I’m really interested in words and language, but heavens above, I’m not a grammar nazi. Perhaps they didn’t read my previous post where I made if perfectly clear that it’s not my aim in life to be a grammar snob.

Having said that I really enjoyed reading this post by Ann Handley, author of Everybody Writes. There are some excellent links in this post if you’re interested in improving your writing skills. She also addresses, but doesn’t really answer the question of why we are so delighted to be able to point out other people’s mistakes. Perhaps this is just part of human nature?

I can’t quite decide on the three words I’d use to describe myself. I like to think that I’m collaborative, thoughtful (in the sense of being a person who thinks a lot, rather than being a lovely thoughtful person). I like to think that I’m loyal and supportive as these are qualities that I value in other people, but I’d be interested to know what three words you’d choose to describe yourself?

6 thoughts on “Three words

  1. Does grammar nazi count as one or two words?!

    I think I’d choose handsome, talented and humble 😉

    1. I’m not sure whether it’s two words but if so the third word could be pedantic. It may run in the family a little, don’t you think?
      But I love your words, so apt.

  2. I think what words you choose depend on your situation and who is asking. Smart, funny, beautiful and kind might not seem relevant in a job situation (although I am sure they really are). Bossy, efficient and collaborative could also describe me at work. I never think of myself as creative but perhaps that would be a good one – at least other people often say that about me, persistent and sensitive perhaps could be another couple. Hard isn’t it??

    1. Yes I think it’s quite hard and I agree that the context matters. I would definitely say that you are creative, especially when it’s combined your amazing organising skills.

  3. Well, you set me a challenge Margaret and I must meet it! If there is a word (which at the moment I can’t think of) that describes someone who meets life’s challenges then that would be my first pick. The other two would be creative and kind. Funny though, I might not have picked kind 20 years ago, I think I’ve grown into the word as I’ve matured.

    And by the way the word that springs to mind when I think of you is patient

    1. Excellent choices! Not that I need to judge of course, it’s not about what I think but I do happen to agree that you are indeed one of the bravest “I’ll just give it a go” people I know. And yes, both kind and creative.

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