Comparative deletions are hypnotic words where we make a comparison but don’t explain what we are comparing. There is some kind of standard or judgment involved, but it isn’t made clear.
When you accept a judgement without understanding what’s behind it, you can get stuck. Many “self esteem” issues come from deciding someone is better or more worthy at a general level rather than questioning the standard. “Better at what specifically?” If you don’t know what the standard is, how can you improve or disregard it?
Vague comparisons use words like better, best, harder, faster, stronger, improved, more, less, very, bigger, smaller, brighter, louder, healthier, superior, smarter, enhanced. Marketers love these terms. They slip in a percentage together with the comparison so it sounds more credible. (Did you catch the deletion – more credible than what?)
Get a 20% better wash with new improved Gunge-off.
- Better than old ordinary Gunge-off
- Better than washing in muddy water
- Better than washing in clean water without detergent
- Better than if they weren’t washed.
- Instead of coming up as grey shade 100 it is grey shade 80.
- Better than the leading market detergent
The burgers are bigger at the Grease Trap.
- Bigger than Swedish meatballs
- Bigger than the cockroaches out the back
- Bigger than the take out next door
- Bigger than our famous competitor
- 1% bigger
- 95% bigger
- Bigger than we used to make them because now we put sawdust in
Buy our double strength glue
- Double the strength of paper glue
- Double the strength of egg white
- Double the strength of professional welding
- Strength of the smell
- The bond lasts 2 days instead of 1
- It melts the material it is supposed to stick at twice the speed.
- Double the adhesion of the last batch we tried to flog
It’s better not to say anything.
- Than if I told her I thought her bum did look big in those pants
- Than if I spoke at all
- Than if I told her I broke her favorite cup
- Than if I told him the world was ending in 3 weeks
- Than if I spent the next 5 hours telling them about my holiday.
He is smarter
- Than my dog
- Than me in physics
- Than the average 5th grader
- Than 99% of the world’s population
- Than the other applicants
- Than the other people in the office
- Than the boss
- Than Einstein in music theory
- Than a decaying cabbage
Questions to Recover Comparative Deletions
- Better than what specifically
- Bigger than what specifically
- Double the strength of what specifically
- Better than what specifically?
- Smarter than who or what specifically?
- Smarter in what area specifically?