Grammar Simplified

Breaking the Clich: Revamp Your Emails for Maximum Impact

The Rise of Clichs: How to Write E-mails That Stand OutIn today’s digital age, e-mails have become the primary mode of communication for both personal and professional purposes. However, with the convenience of e-mail comes the risk of falling into the trap of using clichs and “meh” expressions that make our messages appear dull and unremarkable.

In this article, we will explore the common clichs and expressions to avoid, provide alternative phrases to use instead, and give specific examples of clichs and their alternatives. By the end, you will have the tools to craft polished and engaging e-mails that capture your recipient’s attention and leave a lasting impression.

Identifying and Eliminating Clichs and “Meh” Expressions in E-mails

Common Clichs and Expressions to Avoid

When it comes to writing e-mails, it’s essential to steer clear of clichs that have been overused to the point of losing their impact. These clichs not only make our messages sound unimaginative, but they also fail to effectively convey our thoughts and emotions.

Here are some commonly used clichs and “meh” expressions that you should avoid:

1. “Hope this email finds you well” – This generic greeting is the perfect example of a “meh” expression that lacks any personal touch.

Instead, take a moment to genuinely acknowledge the recipient. For example, you could say, “I must say, your recent achievements have been impressive.”


“Just checking/following up” – This phrase is often used to convey the intention of a friendly reminder, but it comes across as weak and unassertive. Instead, consider using a more direct and confident approach.

For instance, you could say, “I would appreciate your prompt response regarding the upcoming deadline.”

Alternative Phrases to Use Instead

Now that we have identified some common clichs and expressions to avoid, let’s explore alternative phrases that can inject freshness and personality into your e-mails. By utilizing these alternatives, you can engage your readers and make a lasting impression.

Here are some examples:

1. Instead of “Hope this email finds you well,” try “I trust this email finds you thriving in your endeavors.”


Instead of “Just checking/following up,” try “I wanted to ensure that this matter receives the attention it deserves.”

Specific Examples of Clichs and Their Alternatives

“I hope this email finds you well.”

This clichd opening has become the go-to phrase for many e-mail writers, but it fails to spark any interest or establish a personal connection. Instead of relying on this tired greeting, consider using a specific compliment or acknowledgement that shows you have taken the time to understand the recipient’s situation.

For instance:

“I wanted to reach out to express my admiration for the exceptional work you showcased in the recent project. Your attention to detail and innovative approach truly set you apart.”

By starting with a genuine compliment or acknowledgement, you immediately grab the reader’s attention and set a positive tone for the rest of the e-mail.

“Just following up . .


The phrase “just following up” is often used as a weak attempt to remind someone about a pending matter. However, it lacks the directness and assertiveness necessary to elicit a timely response.

Instead, consider using more direct options that convey a sense of urgency and importance. For example:

“As we approach the deadline for the project, I wanted to check on the status and see if there is anything I can do to support you.”

By using a direct and proactive approach, you demonstrate your commitment to the project and the recipient’s success.


In today’s fast-paced world, it is crucial to write e-mails that stand out from the crowd. By identifying and eliminating clichs and “meh” expressions, and using alternative phrases that create a personalized and engaging tone, you can ensure that your e-mails leave a lasting impression.

So, the next time you sit down to write an e-mail, remember to be creative, specific, and assertive. Your recipients will appreciate the effort, and your messages will have a far greater impact.

More Examples of Clichs and Their Alternatives

“Just Circling Back . .


The phrase “just circling back” is often used as a way to follow up on a previous conversation or request. However, it can come across as repetitive and unnecessary.

Instead of using this clichd expression, consider more direct and concise alternatives. Here are a few examples:


“I wanted to check on the status of our previous discussion regarding…”

2. “I am reaching out to see if there have been any updates on…”


“I wanted to follow up on our previous conversation about…”

By using these alternative phrases, you can communicate your intention clearly without resorting to tired and overused expressions. “New Normal”

The phrase “new normal” has become prevalent in the context of the global pandemic, but it has now become overused and fails to provide any substantial meaning.

Additionally, it can be confusing as the definition of what constitutes the “new normal” varies for each individual. Instead of relying on this clichd phrase, consider using more specific and descriptive language.

For example:

1. “The current circumstances have reshaped the way we conduct business.”


“We have adapted to the changing landscape and implemented new procedures.”

3. “In light of recent events, we have made significant adjustments to our operations.”

By using specific language to describe the changes and adaptations, you can provide a clearer understanding of the situation without relying on vague and overused expressions.

Additional Clichs and Suggestions for Improvement

“As Discussed . .


The phrase “as discussed” is often used as a reference to a previous conversation or meeting. However, it can be vague and leave the recipient unsure of the details being referred to.

Instead of using this generic phrase, provide more specific information to jog the recipient’s memory. For instance:


“As we discussed during our meeting last Tuesday, I wanted to remind you about…”

2. “Regarding our conversation about the new project, I would like to update you on…”

By adding more context and details, you create a clearer reference point for the recipient, ensuring better understanding and follow-up.

“Sorry for the Delay.”

While it may seem polite to apologize for a delay in responding to an email, apologizing for every minor delay can become unnecessary and dilute the impact of a genuine apology. Instead of defaulting to a standard apology, consider offering a unique explanation or acknowledgment.

For example:

1. “Thank you for your patience.

I wanted to ensure I have all the necessary information before responding.”

2. “I appreciate your understanding as I navigated a particularly busy period in my schedule.”

By providing a personalized explanation or acknowledgment, you show that you value the recipient’s time and attention, without using a generic apology for every delay.


As we delve further into the world of clichs and “meh” expressions, it becomes evident that simple changes in our language choices can make a significant impact on the effectiveness and overall impression of our emails. By avoiding commonly used clichs and replacing them with alternative phrases, we can create emails that are engaging, concise, and memorable.

So, the next time you find yourself tempted to use a clichd expression, think about the specific message you want to convey and choose language that best captures your thoughts and intentions. Your recipients will appreciate the effort, and your emails will stand out in their inbox.

More Examples of Clichs and Their Alternatives

“If not, no worries!”

The phrase “if not, no worries” is often used when requesting assistance or asking for a favor, but it can come across as dismissive or unprofessional. Instead of using this casual expression, consider using language that clearly communicates your needs and deadlines.

Here are a few examples:

1. “If you could kindly assist me with this matter before [specific deadline], I would greatly appreciate it.”


“I would be grateful for your help in resolving this before [specific date] if possible.”

By using clear language with specific deadlines, you convey a sense of urgency and professionalism, while also respecting the recipient’s time and commitment. “I look forward to your reply.”

The phrase “I look forward to your reply” is often used as a closing statement in emails, but it can be seen as unnecessary and repetitive.

Instead of using this generic phrase, consider providing a specific time frame for the recipient’s response. For example:


“I kindly request a response by [specific date] so that we can proceed with the next steps.”

2. “Your timely response within the next [specific time frame] would be greatly appreciated.”

By providing a specific time frame, you set clear expectations and demonstrate the importance of a prompt reply without relying on clichd expressions.

The Importance of Removing Clutter in Emails

Benefits of Eliminating Unnecessary Phrases

In the world of email communication, clutter refers to the unnecessary phrases and expressions that add bulk and dilute the effectiveness of your message. By removing this clutter, you can make your emails more concise, impactful, and easier to read.

Here are some benefits of eliminating unnecessary phrases:

1. Increased clarity: Removing clutter allows your main points to shine through and ensures that your message is easily understood by your recipients.

2. Time savings: Writing concise emails saves both your time and the time of your recipients.

By eliminating unnecessary phrases, you can communicate your message more efficiently and reduce the need for excessive back-and-forth communication. 3.

Enhanced professionalism: Well-structured and clutter-free emails come across as more professional and polished. This can contribute to a positive perception of your credibility and attention to detail.

Comparison to Spring-Cleaning a Home

Removing clutter in emails can be compared to the process of spring-cleaning a home. When we clean our living spaces, we remove unnecessary items that take up physical space and contribute to a sense of disorganization.

Similarly, removing clutter in emails involves getting rid of unnecessary words and phrases that take up mental space and create confusion. Here are a few key points of comparison:


Upgrading vs. Getting rid of: Just as we upgrade our homes by getting rid of unnecessary items, we can upgrade our emails by removing clutter and replacing it with clear and concise language.

2. Tidiness: A clutter-free home is visually appealing and creates a sense of calm.

Similarly, a clutter-free email is visually pleasing and helps the reader focus on the main message without distractions. 3.

Improved functionality: By removing clutter from our living spaces, we create a more functional environment. Likewise, removing clutter from our emails improves their functionality, making them easier to read, understand, and respond to.


In the digital age, effective email communication is crucial, and avoiding clichs and removing clutter is essential to capturing the attention and respect of your recipients. By replacing clichd phrases with clear and specific language, providing specific time frames for responses, and eliminating unnecessary clutter, you can elevate the impact of your emails.

So, take the time to declutter your emails and communicate with precision and professionalism. Your recipients will appreciate the clarity, and you will achieve greater efficiency in your communication.

In conclusion, being aware of and eliminating clichs and “meh” expressions in our emails is vital for effective communication. By avoiding common clichs and using alternative phrases, we can craft polished and engaging emails that stand out.

Additionally, removing clutter and unnecessary phrases improves clarity, saves time, and enhances professionalism. The importance of concise and impactful communication cannot be overstated.

So, let’s strive to upgrade our email writing skills by avoiding clichs, being specific and direct, and always aiming for clarity. When we make the effort to communicate effectively, we leave a lasting impression and foster better relationships in our digital interactions.

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