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Do we all speak in euphemisms?

Call them euphemisms, embellishments, little white lies, whatever you like. They're common in the workplace and everybody's guilty. These are my favorites.

When was the last time you said something but meant another, or embellished the truth just a bit? Even the most honest and straightforward of us do it from time to time.

Sometimes we're trying to save face or spare somebody's feelings. Other times we're trying to make ourselves appear better than we really are.

I suspect that most of the time we're trying to save ourselves from something unpleasant by telling ourselves it's for the other person's good.

Call them euphemisms, embellishments, little white lies, spinning the truth, exaggerations, whatever you like. They're common in the workplace and everybody's guilty. You can either admit it or not, but if you say "not me," we all know you're lying.

There must be thousands of workplace euphemisms; I invite you to share your favorites with us. Here are some common ones that come to mind, just to get us started:

Hiring and firing
You said, "We welcome you to the company."
You meant, "We can't wait to dump all this crap on you."

You said, "I've got offers from a few other companies."
You meant, "I had one other interview but they never called back."

You said, "We were forced to cut 10 percent of our workforce."
You meant, "We used the layoff to get rid of you."

You said, "He left the company to pursue other business opportunities."
You meant, "He got canned."

You said, "She left the company to spend more time with her family."
You meant, "She got canned."

You said, "We're reorganizing to better align our resources with changing market conditions."
You meant, "We're laying you off."

You said, "I'll really miss working here."
You meant, "So long, saps!"

Desperation
You said, "Customers are champing at the bit."
You meant, "We got two phone calls and one was a wrong number."

You said, "We see strong market demand for our new product."
You meant, "We're praying for customers before we run out of funds."

You said, "We're right on schedule."
You meant, "If we get it done on schedule it'll be a miracle."

You said, "My boss gets a little high-strung sometimes."
You meant, "My boss is a raving lunatic."

You said, "I love my job."
You meant, "I need my job."

You said, "Everyone in my group is a star."
You meant, "Everyone in my group is equally incompetent."

You said, "I thought that meeting went well."
You meant, "I'm going home to hang myself now."

Time off
You said, "I could use a vacation."
You meant, "If I don't get some time off soon I'm going postal."

You said, "The vacation was great, but I was ready to come back."
You meant, "They had to drag me onto the plane, kicking and screaming."

You said, "I've got a stomach flu."
You meant, "I've got a major-league hangover."

You said, "I'm taking a mental health day."
You meant, "I've got a major-league hangover."

You said, "He took time off for a serious illness in the family."
You meant, "He had a nervous breakdown."

You said, "I came in early today."
You meant, "I'm cutting out early today."

You said, "I worked 60 hours last week."
You meant, "I worked 50 hours last week and took 10 hours of breaks."

You said, "I left after 10 last night."
You meant, "I left at 7:30 last night but there were no witnesses."

Money trouble
You said, "We're a little short on funds."
You meant, "We were technically insolvent three weeks ago."

You said, "Your project just missed the budget cutoff, maybe next quarter."
You meant, "If we had a trillion dollars we still wouldn't fund your project."

You said, "You're at the ceiling for your job level."
You meant, "You're never getting promoted ... ever."

You said, "Everybody got a 3 percent raise."
You meant, "Everybody who's incompetent got a 3 percent raise."

You said, "You do good work, but we have a bell curve for reviews."
You meant, "Nobody has a clue who you are."

You said, "I'm sure our investors will fund the next round."
You meant, "We're going down, every man for himself."

My advice
What I say, "Being honest and straightforward may be tough, but it benefits everyone, even the person you're being tough on."
What I really mean, "Cut all the bull and get real."