So you’ve just ended a phone conversation where you were looking for some concrete help, and now you feel frustrated!
Thinking back on it, you realize that “yeah but” was repeated (by you) at least three times. You want advice, yet the conversation took turns that didn’t feel satisfying.
I know I am not alone on this, have you ever suggested something to a friend and had them respond, “Yes, but…”? Or have you yourself made that comment? I call this the Yes, but Syndrome, and I’ve worked hard to put it out of my life.
All too often, the “yes, but” phenomenon can be heard in ordinary conversation. One person makes a positive statement; however, for some strange reason, the listener feels compelled to respond with: “Yes, but…and so on.”
There have times where I have found myself suffering from YBS. I find myself judging my ideas than imagining them. Yes but it will be probably be too much work. Yes but it has probably been done before. Yes but it will probably be too expensive. Yes but it probably will not work. Any one of these internal judgments would prevent me from fully imagining an idea and would certainly prevent me from sharing it.
I know I am not alone on this, so many of us often find ourselves saying, “Yeah, but he constantly watches what he eats…” about a thin friend. Or we say, “Yeah, but he’s a slave to his schedule…” about someone who achieves multiple goals. Or we say, “Yeah, but he took on way too much risk when he started his company…” about a successful entrepreneur.
Yeah, but that’s how success works.
Here is the thing.
The reason we find excuses is because we’re looking for them.
Let me say that again.
The reason you find excuses is because you’re looking for them.
You’re looking for a way out. You’re looking for a reason why whatever you want to achieve is not possible. That way you don’t have to put yourself (your ego) on the line. You don’t have to be vulnerable, and actually try.
Instead, you get to remain comfortable, eating potato chips, masturbating to porn, and pretending that you’re happy with your life.
The reason you fail to achieve your goals is because the mental framework you have for achieving them is flawed.
You suffer from what I call “Yeah, But” syndrome. Here’s how the conversation goes in your head:
“I really want to start my own business. Yeah, but, I don’t know how to start a business.”
“I really want to travel the world like Cam does. Yeah, but, I don’t have any money to do that.”
“I really want to finally quit gaming for good. Yeah, but, I don’t have anything else to do with my time and I would just be bored all day.”
You may believe joyful celebration is the best time to challenge the troops. Usually it isn’t.
If you think so, then you minimize past success by using it as a platform to challenge people. “Great job everyone! Yeah, but we’re behind schedule for our next project.” Yeah-but moments are kill-joys and de-motivators.
You can challenge everyone tomorrow. Today, pause and celebrate.
Instead of “Yeah, but”… use “Yes, and”.
Look, achieving your goals is not easy. There are obstacles… there are adversities… and who cares! None of that has to stop you from going for it.
The only person who is stopping you is YOU.
But accepting potential obstacles isn’t the only thing you need to do. You also need to commit to action. Action is what will get you the results you’re looking for.
Which brings me to the next phrase in our new mental model: “And, so…”
And so here’s what I’m committed to doing (action!) in order to achieve this goal.
Always do your best.
Some days your best will be different than on other days. Figuring out how to maximize your best self is important.
Remember: In every situation, do the best you can. Removing yes, but from your vocabulary is a good start. Don’t beat yourself up and remember yes, AND.
What is your yes, and story? Share it with us.