Guide to using pronouns in 2021

A flowchart to guide your respectful use of third-party pronouns.

It may feel daunting these days to use the right pronouns with everyone, but it’s really not. Just follow this very simple flowchart1, then you and I will have no trouble at all2.


This is first time I’ve ever made a flowchart, even though I was a computer programmer for over 30 years. It was more difficult than I expected. Here’s the link for the original powerpoint version.


Using the correct pronoun is actually easier than the above flowchart represents, in just three simple rules: 1) For the first person (i.e. yourself) use pronouns like me, myself, & I (also known as “everyone in the world’s actual preferred pronouns”). 2) For the second person (i.e. the person you’re talking to) use pronouns like you, your, & yourself. 3) For the third person (i.e. the person you’re talking about) don’t use any pronouns at all—using a third-person pronoun is just a lazy way to hide that you’ve forgotten someone’s name.