13 words only fake people use (remove them from your vocab, now!)

Are you tired of fake friends and insincere colleagues?

I know I am. It’s exhausting to be around people who say one thing but mean another, right? They make us feel like we’re always on edge, trying to decipher their true intentions. 

That’s why I decided to put together this list of 13 words that only fake people use, so you can spot them a mile away and remove these words from your own vocabulary.

Now, let’s dive into this list, so you can transform your conversations into genuine connections!

1) “Literally”

I’ll start with something mild but can actually highlight that a person is given to “literally” exaggerating things. 

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve rolled my eyes at people who use “literally” when they actually mean “figuratively.” 

It’s such a dead giveaway that they’re not being sincere or they’re exaggerating the situation. 

When someone says, “I’m literally dying,” you know they’re being fake.

Trust me, if they were actually dying, they wouldn’t be saying it so casually.

2) “Honestly”

Another word that instantly turns me skeptical is “Honestly” (and other iterations of it, like “To be honest”, “Truthfully,” etc.). 

For some people, this word might simply be a filler, or they might be using it to soften the blow of what they’re about to say. 

But ironically, it just takes away from the credibility of their statement even more. 

Because…why the need to emphasize their honesty? Does it mean they’re usually dishonest or they usually fudge things?

It’s like they’re trying too hard to convince you that they’re being genuine. 

3) “No worries”

This is another example of a statement that may or may not be insincere, so you’ll have to take context into account. 

Here’s the thing: sometimes “no worries” is a genuine expression of understanding and forgiveness. 

But there are times when it’s used insincerely, as a way to brush off someone’s apology without actually accepting it. 

When you sense that the person saying “no worries” is still upset or holding a grudge, you know you’re dealing with a fake response.

4) “I’m fine”

We’ve all used this one at some point, haven’t we? Just like “No worries”, it may or may not be insincere. Again, it depends on the context. 

“I’m fine” is a classic way to avoid vulnerability and keep our true feelings hidden. While it might not always be an indication of fakeness, it can be a sign that someone isn’t willing to open up or engage in an authentic conversation

The next time you catch yourself saying, “I’m fine,” pause and consider if you’re being honest with yourself and those around you.

5) “I’ll pray for you”

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Let me be clear: there’s absolutely nothing wrong with offering prayers and positive thoughts for someone going through a difficult time. 

The problem arises when “I’ll pray for you” becomes an empty gesture. It’s fake niceness – a way to feign concern without actually doing anything to help. 

If you sense that someone is using this phrase insincerely or as a way to end the conversation, it’s a red flag that they may not be as supportive as they claim to be.

In fact, the phrase can easily point to how dismissive they really are of your troubles!

6) “At least…”

Speaking of being dismissive, this one’s a masterclass in undermining someone’s feelings or experiences. 

By saying “at least” followed by a qualifier, the speaker is essentially telling the other person that their concerns or problems are not that bad or that they should be grateful for what they have. 

Picture this: you’re telling a friend about how devastated you are that you’ve been fired from your job. And then they suddenly say, “At least your partner still has a job!”

I mean, for me, that’s going to feel crappy. I know we’re supposed to be grateful for the other good things going on, but that doesn’t mean we’re not allowed to feel bad. It’s a terrible feeling to be told that, especially in such a dismissive way. 

Genuine empathy doesn’t involve comparing or minimizing someone’s struggles. No one should have to feel like their emotions aren’t valid. 

7) “Just saying”

Now we’re getting into the realm of the clearly, 100%, no-doubt-about-it fake words or phrases people say. And the first one up is the classic “just saying” phrase. 

It’s like the ultimate escape route for fake people. They’ll say something offensive or controversial, and when they sense that others aren’t on board, they’ll quickly add, “I’m just saying.” 

This phrase allows them to backpedal, masking their true feelings while trying to avoid any confrontation.

8) “It’s just a joke”

Ah, the classic deflecting move. When someone says something hurtful and then claims it was “just a joke,” they’re attempting to deflect responsibility for their actions

This phrase is often used by fake people to excuse their insensitive or inappropriate behavior. I’ve heard this one too many times in my different friend groups, and right away, it tells me to keep that person at a distance. 

Remember this – a true friend will recognize when they’ve crossed a line and apologize sincerely, without hiding behind humor.

9) “No offense, but…”

You know what’s coming next, right? An offensive statement! 

Whenever someone starts a sentence with “no offense, but…”, they’re basically acknowledging that what they’re about to say is offensive. 

And yet, they say it anyway, hoping this little disclaimer will absolve them of any responsibility for hurting someone’s feelings. Sometimes they’ll even say it under the guise of concern. 

Don’t fall for it! When you hear this phrase, get your self-preservation barriers up because you’re dealing with a fake person!

10) “Bless your heart”

This one is especially common in the South, and I’ve experienced it firsthand. 

At first, it sounds like a sweet and caring sentiment, right? Wrong. 

In many cases, “bless your heart” is a thinly veiled insult, used to patronize someone or express pity for their perceived shortcomings. 

It’s passive-aggressive, and that’s not a vibe you want in your life!

11) “Between you and me”

reveals persons true character 13 words only fake people use (remove them from your vocab, now!)

Ugh. This one makes me really uncomfortable. 

The moment I hear this phrase, my trust alarm goes off. It’s a sneaky way of trying to establish a secretive bond, making you feel like you’re part of an exclusive club. 

But here’s the catch: if someone is willing to share someone else’s secrets with you, what’s stopping them from sharing your secrets with others? This is the one thought that always runs through my head the minute I hear “Between you and me.” 

Instead of feeling like I’m forming a bond with the person by sharing secrets, I’m immediately turned off by their disregard for other people’s privacy. 

Remember, a genuine friend will respect your privacy and the privacy of others.

12) “I hate drama”

Another phrase that tells me someone is being fake is “I hate drama.” 

Because ironically, people who frequently claim to hate drama are often the ones creating it. I’ve seen this played out time and time again. 

By making this statement, they’re attempting to distance themselves from the chaos they’ve caused or to paint themselves as the innocent party.

So if you notice someone repeatedly saying they “hate drama,” it might be time to take a closer look at their role in it.

And if we’re talking about drama, the next one is something secretly drama-loving people say, too…

13) “Sorry, not sorry”

For me, this phrase is the epitome of insincerity. When someone says “sorry, not sorry,” they’re acknowledging that they should apologize, but they’re refusing to do so. 

It tells me right away that they’re more interested in being right or winning an argument than in preserving a genuine connection. 

Steer clear of people who use this phrase frequently, and make sure you don’t fall into the same trap.

Final thoughts

And there you have it! These 13 words and phrases are telltale signs that you might be dealing with a fake person. Now that you’re equipped with this knowledge, you can spot insincerity from a mile away and make sure your own vocabulary is free from these linguistic traps.

Remember, authentic relationships are built on trust, openness, and genuine connection. By eliminating these words from your own vocabulary and being mindful of their use by others, you’ll be one step closer to surrounding yourself with people who truly value and appreciate you for who you are.

So, let’s start making our conversations more real and heartfelt. Let’s be genuine, honest, and kind to one another. Together, we can create a world where fake people are a thing of the past.

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Picture of Tina Fey

Tina Fey

I've ridden the rails, gone off track and lost my train of thought. I'm writing for Ideapod to try and find it again. Hope you enjoy the journey with me.

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