Could: (v) expression of possibility
Couldn’t: (v) unable
I don’t think anybody wants to be negative.
But the trouble with the two words, could and couldn’t, is that neither one allows for the possibility that something has a great chance.
Even when we venture out and say, “I could win,” we’re allowing ourselves an awful lot of room for explanation if things fall apart.
And if we go ahead and say, “I couldn’t,” we close the door on the adventure completely.
I think could and couldn’t sum up the human race.
We are never so positive that we move with great confidence, ease and style into resolution, and we certainly seem better suited for retreating or rejecting.
Is there another word?
“Might” doesn’t work. That’s really uncertain.
“Should” seems judgmental.
“Would” sounds like it’s ready to make an immediate excuse upon any drawback.
And there’s just something downright arrogant about saying “I will.” There are too many variables in life that we do not control for us to guarantee the result.
So what is the best situation?
I am certainly tired of living in a world of “could” and “couldn’t.” I don’t want to embrace the negativity that goes into being cautious with “could” and dark with “couldn’t.”
Language trips us up because it describes the actual condition of our internal emotions. Eventually, our tongues will confess what is deeply brewing in our hearts.