"You're too sensitive" is the most annoying phrase in America, beating out "No offense, but…"

Preply, a language-learning app, polled 1200 users on the most annoying passive-aggressive behaviours and phrases. Top of the list on the latter front was "You're too sensitive," followed by the likes of "No offense, but" and my own favorite, "that was surprisingly good."

In the workplace, the most hated phrases include "As you know", "For future reference" and the infuriating classic "friendly reminder."

According to the report:

  • 99% of respondents have experienced someone being passive-aggressive.
  • 82% admit to being passive-aggressive themselves. 
  • The most passive-aggressive people, according to respondents: 1. Coworkers 2. Mothers 3. Friends.
  • The worst passive-aggressive behaviors: 1. Fake politeness 2. Fake innocence 3. Weaponized kindness. 
  • The worst passive-aggressive phrases ranked: 1. "You're too sensitive" 2. "Why are you getting so upset?" 3. "No offense, but…"

"Weaponized kindness" is my new ambient drone band name.