Do you often hear yourself saying “Yes, I want to do it (get a new job, change my career, start a new hobby, have a dinner night with my husband, go alone for a retreat etc.), BUT…”

The best way to know for sure, if you do it, is to observe yourself for the coming 7 days and pay close attention to the vocabulary you use. Carry a small notebook with you or use your mobile phone and mark down every time you use the word ‘but’. Count it at the end of each day.

The dangers of the ‘but’

The word ‘but’ sounds so innocent, yet it is not! It is a very dangerous word, that infuses the poison in your life slowly but surely. Believe me or not it is a major cause of you not getting things you want in your life. How do I know for sure? Because I also was addicted to it myself. I am still not completely ‘but-free’, nor will I ever be, BUT I am aware of the effect and I know better now how to combat it.

Please read the following sentences:

“I want to run a marathon, but I am so busy with my work and family. I do not have time to practice.”

“I have a great business idea, but I do not have enough time, money, energy,… to do it.”

“My holidays were really great, but it was too hot, and the hotel was actually pretty lousy.”

What do you think? What is the probability that the person saying it is actually going to run the marathon or to start the business? And do you get the feeling the person really enjoyed holidays?

The word ‘but’ has this nasty characteristic that it, almost always, undermines the first part of the statement. It actually highjacks the whole story and leaves a bitter taste afterward. When I became aware of how often I used the word ‘but’, I started to pay attention to what I was saying and what kind of impact it had on my mood and actions. It was a shock.

The word ‘but’ is the one that separates a whiner from a winner!

So, we know now who a whiner is, a person who uses the word ‘but’ too often and as a consequence is not realizing its own potential. So, who is a winner? Many years ago, I saw somewhere a quote “As long you are fighting you are a winner.” And that is my definition of a winner. As long as you are not giving up and keep fighting for yourself and your dreams, you are a winner. It doesn’t mean that you cannot make mistakes, you can. It actually is a crucial factor of being successful, ask any athlete. As long as you get up on your feet and continue to fight.

A winner sees obstacles on its way for what they are – obstacles to conquer, not the shop stoppers. And a winner uses different vocabulary.

A winner says:

“I want to change my career/life and I will find a way to figure it out.”

“I had a beautiful holiday.”

“I want to run a marathon, so I made a plan to run every Saturday and Sunday morning.”

The winners

I care about my clients and I always want them to become ‘winners’. Recently, I started to work with a new client, a natural born winner! Although her situation is absurdly difficult, she remains positive and whenever she has a task to complete she find creative ways to complete them. So far, I haven’t heard from her the word “but”. She is my inspiration!

So, do you also want to transition to a winners-land? Start paying attention to the ‘buts’! And bite your tongue as soon as you become aware of it. Either finish your sentence right there or replace ‘but’ with other words such as ‘and’ & ‘so’.

Whether we like it or not, words do create our reality and destiny. So, we must choose them carefully. Our future depends on it!

Always keep in mind.

The whiner creates the excuses.

The winner creates the solutions.

Choose mindfully which one you want to be. The choice is yours.

Photo by Becca Tapert on Unsplash