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The Chronicle of Higher Education Pumps Up Your Resume With Strong Verbs

Though we’re pretty sure this isn’t what the career experts had in mind:

Disrupted schedules

* Insulted supervisors

* Laughed at urgent requests

* Created chaos in office

* Crushed hopes

* Exemplified idleness

* Took frequent breaks

* Broke confidences

* Wrote ransom notes

* Gave away trade secrets

* Forgot important papers

* Drove colleagues crazy

Actually, there’s a linguistics lesson in this list. According to Jacob Grimm, half of the Brothers Grimm (yes really), the second half of those words (starting at “Took”) are the true strong words, because they don’t come with “-ed” endings. Old words—ones that have been part of English for a millennium—have more power, Chronicle writer Allan Metcalf says. So look for the real strong words. And then use them better than he did above.

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