Don't know why. It's just a habit I picked up -- perhaps from hearing others use it. We all do that, no? We hear others using a word and we just lapse into using it, too.
So here's what Hunter Thurman, founder of the innovation consultancy, Thriveplan, has to say:
1. “So” insults your audience. That little head cock, slight furrowing of the brow, and set-up with “so” says to your audience, “I’m trying to dumb this down so someone like you may have at least a chance of comprehending the importance of what I do.”I'm not sure I get the first one, but the others ring true.
2. “So” undermines your credibility. The “so” setup also announces: here comes the rehearsed part of my discussion.
3. “So” demonstrates that you’re not 100% comfortable with what you’re saying. Just as the “so” setup announces that this portion of the conversation will be very deliberate, it also demonstrates that you’re not as comfortable with your story as you think you are.
There's a larger lesson here. We should periodically look at our writing for useless words. There (as in the previous sentence) comes to mind. Really: what does it say that we have to say this? Very: just covenant with yourself that you'll never, ever use this word again as long as you live. Okay: a lazy man's segue.
Okay, enough on that. Really.
Think how much time you'll save if you drop these words. You could probably wrap up your life a few years earlier.