If you search for “why is grammar important,” Google returns 854,000,000 results.
In other words, people aren’t convinced grammar matters. Sometimes that’s because grammar was taught to them in a tedious, soul-sucking way (endless sentence diagrams, anyone?). Sometimes they feel overwhelmed by all the “rules,” so they give up. Sometimes they just don’t see the point. Does good grammar really matter?
We think so. We’ve been grammar experts for more than 20 years, and our team’s collective experience totals in the hundreds of years. But we’ll try to lay aside our huge bias and give you a fair analysis.
5 Reasons Good Grammar Matters
1. Your words hold meaning.
What you say and write matters. You know this; you’ve been helped and hurt by the words of others. Making your words count is one of the most important things you can do with your life. And if you’re accidentally saying things you don’t mean (using words incorrectly, changing your meaning with poor punctuation, mixing up spelling, etc.), your words are at the mercy of poor grammar. When you use good grammar, you’re owning your words and their power.
2. People are judging you.
It’s easy to get defensive about grammar: “It’s just a way for snooty educated people to look down on others.” Fair enough. But people will judge you for anything, so you shouldn’t base your life or actions on their judgment. If you’re looking for opportunity, then effective language, including good grammar, is a huge leg up. Good grammar opens doors because people are judgy. Take advantage of that.
3. Confused people don’t listen.
If you can’t express yourself clearly, your audience will be confused. Once they’re confused, they’ll start ignoring you. If you can speak and write in a way most people easily understand (using subject-verb agreement, spelling words correctly, placing periods at the ends of sentences, etc.), you’ll be understood. As far as whether people agree with what you say, well, we’re back to #2 (and we’re all in that boat together).
4. Life is hard enough.
You’ve got 99 problems; poor grammar (and all the problems it can cause) shouldn’t be one of them. It’s an easy fix because there are so many word nerds like us who want to help.
5. Grammar is never going away.
Besides breathing, communicating through language is one of the most common things you do. You use grammar no matter what, be it terrible, okay-ish, good, or excellent. Embrace it. Master it. Don’t let bad grammar get in the way of your voice being heard.
How Do I Learn Good Grammar?
If the only thing holding you back from better grammar is knowledge, we’ve got your back. We regularly publish grammar lessons that will strengthen your grammar game and tickle your funny bone.
First, subscribe to our email list. We will never sell your contact information, and you won’t hear from us too often.
Then, search our blog for the topics that confuse you the most. Here’s a recent blog post to get you started on your better grammar journey: Consistency: The Steaks Are High…and Delicious - Part 1.
Thanks for reading!