Work: My Most Hated Word!

You guys had a ton of good guesses about my most hated word... but the word I'm trying to get rid of is: WORK!

No one wants to do work. My girlfriend always says, "I have to go back to work after lunch" or "I got to work at 10 o'clock."  I keep correcting her... you aren't going to work, you're going back to the rehab center to help old people and make a difference.

  1. When Jason and I hold e-classes, he always gives out "homework" and I get him to rename it to that week's "challenge."
  2. Jason never says he is "sick" ... instead, he has the flu or has a virus he needs to get rid of.
  3. When I get off the phone with business partners, I've stopped saying, "Get back to work."  Instead, I say things like, "Get back to having fun building your business."

Finally, when I get an angry customer, his e-mail usually says a PHP script didn't "work" ... what a waste of time, because I always have to reply and say, "How did it not 'work?'  Was there an error message, did you try anything?"

Even when something "works" in a positive way, it's still not specific enough... it needs to be benefit-oriented.  (The script didn't just "work" ... it showed up on the page and gathered opt-ins!)

Look at how many of you took time of your day to answer the previous post... you were escaping your "work!"  (Ironically enough, the very FIRST answer within 10 seconds was the correct guess.)  You need to find a way to make your so-called "work" enjoyable... turn it into a game:

  • Friendly competition: Get an accountability partner and try to earn more money than him.
  • More output: If you wrote 10 articles last week, write 12 articles this week.
  • Less time: If you spent 20 hours building your business last week, do those same tasks this week in 15 hours and take Friday off.

Many people ask me and Jason how we get more done in a week than most people do in a year, how we can work for long stretches of time without burnout and always stay motivated... it's because we don't WORK!  We have fun writing copy and creating video products.

For the rest of the day today, count the number of times you say the word "work."  If you said it 10 times today, then make it a goal to say it 9 times or less tomorrow.  After that, only say it 8 times in a day... until you stop using the word "work" altogether.

80% of getting things accomplished and making money is just having the right mindstate, not necessarily the best skills... that's why so many people went ga-ga- over Time Management on Crack.

At the very least, catch yourself whenever you say this bad word.  That's a step in the right direction.

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  1. Internet Marketing Email » Blog Archive » Work: My Most Hated Word! | March 24, 2009
  1. michael says:

    WORK! Wow, I was way off. You know, I woke up, and this is this the first website I visited. Lol

    No php tactics used to lure me me over here, lol, just hungery for the final answer. Had to know, the suspense, haha.

    Thanks for this post Robert.

    “For the rest of the day today, count the number of times you say the word “work.” If you said it 10 times today, then make it a goal to say it 9 times or less tomorrow. After that, only say it 8 times in a day… until you stop using the word “work” altogether.”

    I’m already hearing, “work” “work” “work” from my older brother just now. He said it “like” 4 times already. Have a good one Robert, and everyone else too.

  2. Leslie says:

    Great post Robert…

    Come to think of it, I hate that damn word too. That’s why I walked away from my day job to pursue my own agenda that I love.

    I had a great time thinking of the four letter words and posting them to this blog that you host.

    Thanks again for the great products and content..



  3. John Collins says:

    Hi Robert –

    I would have never got it. I don’t consider what I do an anchor I’m dragging around. I really don’t recall the last time I used that word. I’ve had people ask me where I work. I might be guilty for saying rarely – I used to work for… but now I don’t I follow my passion;o)

  4. Hank Scott says:

    Let’s not forget “its” 3-letter cousin: JOB…

    Are you “out of a job” or “jobless” (i.e. “unemployed”), or merely self-employed?

    Recession/depression mindsets are forged from such words as these!

    That usually leads to the use to “pull a job” (i.e. rob somebody).

    Without this word there might be a whole lot less “jobbery” (corrupt dealing; graft).

    And no need to ever be J.O.B. (jealous of Bob), or “just over broke” for that matter!

  5. Hi Robert

    Once again, I admire your way of blogging. You managed to keep me wondering what the word would be, all day long. While it is just a word…

    Way to go!


  6. Boy Robert, I said the word ‘work’ about 50 times within 10 minutes. My darn satellite service is down and I keep repeating… please let this damn box work, I want to see March Madness! Oh well, guess I have some things to work on. There I go again. Darn gone work… I mean word.

  7. Mary says:

    Wonderful post!


  8. Hey Robert puzzle seekers one n’all … yeah I knew all the time but just thought I’d just play along … yerrr right … strange how looking back to when the question was asked it seemed so easy then now when how …

    Aaaall my best to you and your data
    information knowledge wisdom … lol

    Phillip Skinner

  9. The late ground-breaking hypnotist, D.R. Dobson, routinely named his seminars “Funshops” instead of “workshops.”

    Understanding anchoring…uh, “stimulus-response” (nlp snobs will hate me for that abbreviated understanding…) helps everyone to be more productive and enjoy life more.

    Just reading this and noticing how I felt was quite illuminating…

    “Get back to work.” Instead, I say things like, “Get back to having fun building your business.”

    The first made me feel dark and heavy. The second felt light, energizing and dazzling white.

    When you (anyone) can liberate the energy it takes from carrying around dark & heavy things in their lives and transform them to energizing…it no longer seems like the long dusty road to success, but the path along which your skip, jump, play…and even have time to sniff the roses.

    Live JoyFully!

    Judy Kettenhofen, Profit Strategist/Copywriter

    PS — no wonder I didn’t do my home”work”. LOL.

  10. Vince says:

    “You guys had a ton of good guesses about my most hated word… but the word I’m trying to get rid of is: WORK!”

    Hey Robert, you must have automated this post, because Debbie (the first reply) did guess it. 🙂

    # Debbie Says:
    March 19th, 2009 at 2:24 pm
    Ten seconds after Robert twitters, I reply…. the word is WORK.
    People don’t like it, it’s scary. 🙂

  11. Sophie says:

    It’s a cultural thing, Robert. But I got it. I live by the motto: “I never do anything for money that I would not do for free” and I haven’t violated it for the past 22 years.

    Thank you for the great “thinking game”. I appreciated it. Got to look at things with different eyes. Wonderful.


    Sophie the Maven

  12. Mystery and Intrigue Uncovered Automated this Posting Rocks

    All my best to you and your????
    Phillip skinner

  13. I guessed it!!

    Anyways, Great work bro!

  14. Ryan says:

    It’s almost frightening that whenever we’re introduced to someone new that we ask them what do they for for a living or where do they work. It feels kind of lame just uttering those words. Lack of imagination I guess.

  15. Hmmm…bummer. my comment didn’t show up.

    Are comments moderated? Or was it lost to oblivion.


  16. Adam Fulford says:

    Why is it widely considered to more ethical and respectable to be “working” for some kind of institution with a “boss” breathing down your neck than exploring other avenues to make money?

  17. I have to admit I use the word work sometimes.

    It’s primarily used when someone wants me to to do something I don’t really want to do.

    So I’ll say… “Ahhh I wish I could, But I’ve got to WORK! I appreciate the invite though. MAybe next time when I don’t have so much work to do.”

    That’s something most people get and will leave it at that. I think it’s because most wage slaves know what it’s like to “have to work.”

    What they don’t realize is the thing I really wanted to do in the first place was “creating”… which they would consider work. I consider it a lot of fun.

    Anyway… this post certainly kept my attention longer than most.


  18. Mike CJ says:

    What a shame! Yet another word someone is trying to remove from the vocabulary. Work is good word – we all do it every day. It’s not the word that’s the problem, it’s your own connotations surrounding the word, Robert.

    We’re heading down a slippery slope where any words that some people see negatively are replaced with bland euphemisms – problems are suddenly “issues” etc.

    Don’t change the words – change the mindset. I work hard every day, but I like the work I do, and I earn good money at it!

  19. Oh, man, that would have been my guess, but it was given earlier so I assumed you already were saying it was wrong.

    I guess assume should be a hated word also. 🙂

    I know what you mean, people in my town ask me when I’m going to retire from whatever I work at, and I tell them, I’m never going to retire because if I did, I would do what I do for a hobby anyway, so what’s the point?

  20. Ric Raftis says:

    I guess I must be one of the lucky ones. The only time I have ever “worked” in my life was the 3 years I spent in the Army. Apart from that, I have always had a passion for what I did or I moved on to another job where the passion was re-ignited.

    These days, working full time from home, I “work” longer hours than I have ever done. It’s not because I have to, it’s because I absolutely love what I do and am totally passionate about my business. I sincerely hope that other people arrive at that point sometime in their lives.


  21. Robert Plank says:

    @Vince: Nope, I didn’t automate it. It was still fun to see all the other guesses. What would be the fun of closing it after Debbie guessed in about 10 seconds 🙂

  22. cool! had me hanging on this…this was the first site I came to this morning and was excited to see you had posted the answer 😉

    so work…is it really so bad to use it in copy? how about “7 easy traffic methods that work!”

    and I can see how it can have a negative connotation is you use it like “ohhhh, I have to get back to work” but generally I don’t feel that strongly against it…I guess it’s how you look at it.

    one definition of work is “exertion or effort directed to produce or accomplish something” which sounds pretty positive to me.

    Stuart Stirling

  23. Gerald S. says:

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on “work”. I agree that I’d rather have “fun” than work. So, I am going to remove that word from my every day speech.


  24. Hi,

    It’s very important to stay motivated.

    You are very so right about the word “WORK”.

    The mindset suddenly changes when we start using a different word then the usual word: “work”

    So, let me get back to “Having Fun” 🙂

  25. Don Morris says:

    I definitely have to stop using that word. My wife will ask, “Whatcha doin’?” and I answer “Workin'” even though what I’m doing doesn’t feel like work. I like what I do (most of the time), so it’s time to expand my vocabulary.

  26. Sharyn says:

    Hi Robert,
    The “w” word does not worry me 🙂
    But when prefaced with another 4 letter word, I
    am not so happy…
    HARD is the word that makes work “not fun” 🙂
    to me…
    Find something you feel passionate about and do it, but maybe never call it work, call it your life…

  27. Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.

  28. Hazwan says:

    Anyone have any ideas to transform
    ‘work’ into something more empowering?

    Sort of transformational grammar thingy.

    Eg. work -> ‘challenge’
    work -> ?

  29. Yup true… If you are in a profession you love. You will never feel like working again…

  30. Teresa King says:

    Hi Robert!
    I was expecting the word to be “quit” or quitter.

    Work is something that is done everyday. It’s how
    you view it. Of course, whatever you do to make
    money should be interesting or fun. The more interesting
    or fun, the faster the time goes.

    I never seem to have enough time. Then I find myself
    playing online games. Or spending time on facebook.

    It used to be ICQ which got into my time; or doing favors for people. But, that was fun, too, back then.

    What I want is a maid. AS households are very time

    My desk is not organized; and that is a major thing
    for me to face. And that to me, is WORK. But
    boss is another word, I don’t like. But right now, there
    are a lot of people out of work and can’t find a boss.
    So, boss might sound like a great word right now.
    Good article, Robert.

    Thank you,

    Teresa King

  31. Debbie says:

    I’m the Debbie that guessed the answer within 10 seconds.

    As soon as I read the clues, I knew what Robert was getting at. How?

    For one thing, I read the clues carefully and for another I’ve been following Robert long enough to know his stance on a few things. A word here, a sentence there. Sometimes that’s all it takes.

    The key in marketing (and I’m a marketing consultant in real life) is to put yourself in your potential customer’s place. To really figure out where they are coming from. That’s what I did when I was reading Robert’s clues.

    Easy peasy. 🙂

    But no – I don’t agree with his stance. I don’t think work is a bad thing. In fact, working hard often has its advantages.

    No one wants to be stuck in a dead-end job, or work in something that isn’t challenging or fulfilling – but not everyone gets to do what they want.

    And those who work in the less-than-desirable jobs are owed our appreciation for doing work that is much needed but sorely unappreciated.

    So no, I don’t hate work – but it was easy to guess that Robert did.

  32. Hi Again,

    The “Oscar” goes to Debbie for guessing the correct word.

    Great point you made:

    ” And those who work in the less-than-desirable jobs are owed our appreciation for doing work that is much needed but sorely unappreciated. ”

    I Agree with it 🙂

  33. Teresa King says:

    I remember years ago, my sister’s dad would invite us
    to go out boating, and my sister who is a work aholoic
    in her own offline business would say, “Nah, first you
    have to get the boat out of the garage, then you have to
    hook it up and drive it to the boat launch, then you
    have to unhook it from the truck.
    Then you have to tolerate wind knocking your hair around, then
    you have to get the boat hooked up again to take it home
    where you then have to wash it. “I’ll pass.

    Most people would love the experience and not consider
    it work, nor the wind in your hair being a bad thing.
    I used to love sailing and crabbing. I didn’t eat
    crab, nor enjoy cooking it. But, it was all part of the

    I worked long hours as a dance teacher. First I had
    to learn the steps, then I had to put on shows with
    terrible stage fright. I’d stay late practicing and
    practicing, but actually, there was no place I would
    have rather have been. It’s all in what you consider
    work. I consider doing any kind of php, work. I bet
    you don’t, Robert.

  34. Dane Morgan says:

    Really interesting take when you say that even used in a positive way the word isn’t specific enough to be useful. Even if the other person thinks they know what “it worked” means, of course they could be thinking something completely different than what you mean by it.

    Something to think about for sure… I’ll get right to work on that, :b

  35. dave says:

    I didn’t like work until I retired. Now I work a lot, enjoy it, save 50 0/0 of my earnings. The things I used to enjoy , golf for example, I hardly do any more as I could do it any time. My father-in-law worked in to his 80’s which I didn’t understand at the time. Hope I do the same plus. He lived untill 100 + I hope for the end of next week.

  36. 22 March 2009 21:49:41 Central Daylight Time

    Dear Robert and Jason,


    That reminds me I gotta go now I just remembered something I had to do.

    That reminds me of the Dobie Gillis CBS Situation Comedy – 147 Episodes September 29, 1959 – September 18, 1963 with his beatnick sidekick Maynard G. Krebs.

    Work! I gotta go now Dob, see you later.

    Kind regards
    Frank Funston Eckdall
    Unix Admin
    Ad Naseum

  37. Hank Scott says:


    “Work: My Most Hated Word!”

    Don’t you think the word hate is a bit over-worked?

    Some work at hate, others hate to work.

    Don’t you just hate hate?

    I know I would, if I could only figure out how to do it logically.

  38. Meredith says:

    The only way around lots of work is lots of planning. Bite the bullet at the start and it pays off later.

  39. Jef Nance says:

    hey, Robert, you hit on two things that I think most people aren’t taking advantage of… because they just don’t realize them!

    1 – that the words we use affect the way we view things (positive or negative) and

    2 – that incremental changes can bring big results.

    Great job Robert!


  40. Sean Isaacs says:

    Very intriguing.

    The leading questions – up to this comment – got 169 responses. Isn’t that what everyone wants? An interactive blog with living content/comments from lots of people. Great question.

    I decided not to respond after I saw so many answers.

    I decided to skip it all and find the answer.

    Good job, you kept my attention!

    The Marketing Remedy

  41. It seems like you are advocating not only to avoid using the word “work” but to avoid using generalities when more specific phrases would work better.

    Instead of “work” say the outcome of what you are about to do. So instead of I’m going back to Ralph’s to work, you’d say I’m going back to Ralphs’s to help customers get the food they need to feed their families.

    Instead of “I’m sick”, I’m getting rid of my virus so I can get healthy.

    Good points.

  42. Love it will try it out this week
    and see how it goes.

    Could be a nifty little product 50 best autoresponder e-mails


  43. That is an all time great post. How true and motivational. It’s late at night and was thinking of going to bed but want to stay up and have fun working on my business for a couple more hours. Thanks Robert.

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