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Turn your "BUTs" into "ANDs"

Updated: Aug 21, 2022

It was my "super-senior" year at Stony Brook University and I was strategizing my "comeback year" after a full season of ACL reconstruction rehab. I knew I could never do this alone. And so I asked the athletic department to set me up with a weekly psychological meetings. I was paired with "Dr.B". Dr.B was not an ordinary therapist. He's been working closely with athletes for decades. I trusted him. We started working together and a common theme appeared. Every time I was telling a story he corrected my "but"s saying "and". It will go like this: Me: I feel that I have all this motivation and a lot of energy and I believe in myself, but I- Dr.B: AND! Me: right, and I feel anxious. I was surprised to find out that the "and" fits the sentence every time. Moreover, using addition instead of contrast - provided an empowering feeling.

I am a talented professional AND I make mistakes sometimes.
I prioritize my career and growth AND I need time to rest too.

Instead of using the limiting language that dismisses what I say, I own every part of my words. Ever since, I learned to switch the BUT with an AND and I educate others too with the power of language. It changes my perspective and I highly recommend it! Did you try it? Let me know in the comments!


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