Every time I see or hear someone use the word literally incorrectly, I cringe a little inside. If you are using the word literally to describe something that did not or could not, in fact, happen, stop doing it.
Here are some ridiculous examples of using the word literally the wrong way:
- I literally had a heart attack when I saw John coming down the street. (Really? Your heart actually stopped beating and had to be jump-started?)
- I literally died laughing at school today. (So you're back from the dead?)
- That was literally the funniest thing I've ever seen. (And you've lived how long?)
So. Don't use the word literally unless you really mean it; sprinkling it into every casual sentence like salt only weakens the word and irritates people listening to you talk. Of course, mental pictures like the one above that result from misuse of the word literally are always entertaining. :)
Does literally bother you? Have you found yourself overusing it?