Friday, April 11, 2014

Give the BOOT to "BUT"

While waiting it line at the market I couldn’t help but overhear a conversation between two ladies ahead of me. What started off as a comment regarding “Ellen’s drinking habits” quickly accelerated to an all out rant about her dysfunctional living arrangement, multiple failed relationships and outdated style. After a good 3 minutes, whoever Ellen was sounded like a she could use some real help. Then something strange happened. With a sigh, one woman looked to the other and said, “Bless her heart.” The conversation then switched to Ellen’s “delightful” dinner party for her husband. It seemed strange to me that somehow those three words, “bless her heart”, could completely nullify the previous diatribe.

Then I realized that there’s actually a shorter version of the “bless her heart” contradiction wrapped up in a short, sweet, overused package of only three letters.


Somehow three letters later we are able to completely nix the latter point. I looked up the meaning of “but” and found that its intended use is actually “to indicate the impossibility of anything other than what is being stated.” 

“I want to but…”
“I should but…”
“I will but…”

How disappointing that in one swoop we can completely evade what we want, should or will do all with a word that makes us feel excused for doing the exact opposite.

With that, I urge you to give the boot to "but"!

When you’re about to say…it…stop and ask yourself if you are about to make an excuse. Watch as your entire paradigm shifts when you replace “but” with other words: or, so, and.  You can even delete it all together! Free yourself from excuses and instead give yourself a reason to act.

“I want to so…I’ll ask someone to teach me”
“I should and…I’ll make time to do it”
“I will!”

Take back the power from "but" to do what you want, should or will do and give the boot to "but"! 

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