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The Miracles From Moving Your “But”

The Miracles From Moving Your “But”

Remove the word “but” from your vocabulary, and get more out of life. This word is too often used to state something that we deem conditional. For example, I want to go on a vacation, but I don’t have a lot of money. Or I want a meaningful relationship, but I’m very busy. When we put the word “but” after stating what we want, we automatically create difficulties for ourselves in achieving it. We start to think that what we want isn’t possible until we have sorted our something else first.

Consider that they are unrelated.

The reality is that those four statements are completely irrelevant to each other. They only become connected through our logic. Let’s experiment swapping “but” with “and.”

I want to go on a vacation, and I don’t have a lot of money.

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I want a meaningful relationship, and I’m very busy.

You might see for yourself that they don’t need a lot of money to have a nice vacation away from the regular grind. You can enjoy a beautiful weekend out of town, camping, traveling, road-tripping, or walking on an easy budget. Anything you want can be a period relaxation and freedom.

And…

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You can have a relationship that is supportive and loving that keeps up with a busy schedule. It doesn’t take a lot of time to laugh and to tell someone you love them.

We always find a way.

Often we find a way to go beyond the “conditional want” when we are dealing with a priority. For example, “I want to go out, but I have to work tomorrow” isn’t unusual to change into “I want to go out, and I have to work tomorrow,” explicitly stating that it’s going to be a brief night out. The intrigue of going out sometimes is so strong that it finds a way to make both works. If it was an effective day at work in the morning, is a different question…

Managing both happens when we go beyond our “buts” and “ifs,” our wants become unconditional when we are dealing with priority number 1, we will always find a way to fit it in our schedule.

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As a child, we didn’t have any conditions to our wants. We were given advice, and after time many of us chose to abide by those conditions we truly believe in, and consequently we close off other conditions from consideration. Tim Ferris (best-selling author of the 4 hour work week, 4-hour body and 4-hour chef) shows perfectly how questioning the status-quo can prove to have surprising results.

Practice for efficiency.

Where it is good to develop this habit is in areas that are important to us but aren’t urgent. I.e Tuning up our car, our health, our finances… If keeping up with your health is important to you and you don’t seem to have any time in your schedule, say “I want to work out, and I have no time in my schedule.” Opportunities will show up in questions like; Where can I make time? What can I drop that isn’t as important? What can I delegate? This is something I have been applying in my life personally, and as a result feel finer than the sands of Barcelona’s beaches.

Choosing to connect two facts with “and” not “but” is choosing to be powerful in the areas that are important, especially in the face of challenging circumstances.

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Applying it in your life.

I invite you now to try this in your life. Anywhere that you feel that you have to make a decision, either at work, a weekend activity, a purchase or a dinner, replace your “but” with “and” and see if there are any solutions that appear that you didn’t see before. It won’t look like you first expected, and if you are happy with that, you just applied this human-state-physics bender. Bravo.

As a summary, recognizing that the facts are unrelated with the help of linking them with “and” instead of “but” your creativity will open up and play with possibilities, which can attain what you want and sustain what works in your life.

More by this author

Dean Le Monnier

Life Coach, Public Speaker

The Miracles From Moving Your “But” Shortcut to Happiness

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Last Updated on October 13, 2020

12 Things High Self-Esteem People Don’t Do

12 Things High Self-Esteem People Don’t Do

Having high self-esteem is important if you are aiming for personal or professional success. Interestingly, most people will high levels of self-esteem act in similar ways. That’s why it’s often easy to pick them out in a crowd. There’s something about the way they hold themselves and speak, isn’t there?

We all have different hopes, dreams, experiences, and paths, but confidence has its own universal language. This list will present some of the things you won’t find yourself doing if you have high self-esteem.

1. Compare Yourself to Others

People with low self-esteem are constantly comparing their situation to others. On the other hand, people with higher self-esteem show empathy and compassion while also protecting their own sanity. They know how much they can handle and when they can offer a helping hand.

In the age of social media, however, social comparisons are nearly ubiquitous. One study found that “participants who used Facebook most often had poorer trait self-esteem, and this was mediated by greater exposure to upward social comparisons on social media”[1]. Basically, you will feel worse about yourself if you are constantly getting glimpses into lives that you consider to be better than yours.

Try to limit your time on social media. Also, when you do start scrolling, keep in mind that each profile is carefully crafted to create the appearance of a perfect life. Check yourself when you find yourself wishing for greener grass.

2. Be Mean-Spirited

People with low self-esteem bully others. They take pleasure in putting other people down. People with positive self-esteem see no need to down other people, choosing instead to encourage and celebrate successes.

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If you find that you feel the need to put others down, analyze where that’s coming from. If they’ve had success in life, help them feel good about that achievement. They may do the same for you one day.

3. Let Imperfection Ruin Your Day

Perfectionism isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but obsessing over making everything perfect is a sign that you have low self-esteem and can lead to never-ending negative thoughts. This can turn into an inability to solve problems creatively, which will only make self-esteem issues worse. 

Those with high self-esteem disconnect from the results and do their best without expecting perfection.

People with that kind of confidence understand that messing up is a part of life and that each time they aim and miss success, they’ll at least learn something along the way.

If you miss the mark, or if your plan doesn’t work out exactly as you would have liked, take a deep breath and see if you can pivot in order to do better next time.

4. Dwell on Failure

It’s common to hear people dwelling on all the ways things will go wrong. They are positive that their every failure signals an impossible task or an innate inability to do something. People with healthy self-esteem discover why they failed and try again.

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People with higher levels of confidence also tend to adopt a growth mindset[2]. This type of thinking supports the idea that most of your abilities can be improved and altered, as opposed to being fixed.

For example, instead of saying, “I’m just not good at math; that’s why I did bad on the test,” someone with a growth mindset would say, “Math is difficult for me, so I’ll have to put in some more practice to improve next time.”

Next time you experience a failure, check out this video to help you believe in yourself again:

5. Devalue Your Self-Esteem

People with high self-esteem value their own perception of themselves – they understand that they come first and don’t feel guilty about taking care of themselves. They believe charity starts within, and if they don’t believe that, they’ll never have a healthy self-image.

Self-care is often top of the priority list for people with self-esteem. For some ways to practice self-care, check out this article.

6. Try to Please Others

They can’t please all the people all the time, so confident people first focus on doing what will make them feel fulfilled and happy. While they will politely listen to others’ thoughts and advice, they know that their goals and dreams have to be completed on their own terms.

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7. Close Yourself off

Confident people have the ability to be vulnerable. It’s those with poor self-esteem that hide all the best parts of themselves behind an emotional wall. Instead of keeping the real you a secret, be open and honest in all your dealings.

As Brené Brown, author of Daring Greatly, points out, “Vulnerability is about showing up and being seen”[3]. When you embrace each facet of who you are and allow others to see them as well, it will create deeper, more meaningful connections in your life. When that happens, you’ll realize that perfection doesn’t lead to people liking you more.

You can learn more about the power of vulnerability in this TED talk with Brené Brown:

8. Follow and Avoiding Leading

People with low self-esteem don’t believe they can lead, so they end up following others, sometimes into unhealthy situations. Rather than seeking a sense of belonging, people with high self-esteem walk their own paths and create social circles that build them up.

9. Fish for Compliments

If you’re constantly seeking compliments, you’re not confident. People with high self-esteem always do their best (and go out of their way to do good deeds) because it’s what they want to do, not because they’re seeking recognition. If you need to hear compliments, say them to yourself in the mirror.

You can even try some positive affirmations if you need a confidence boost. Check out these affirmations to get started.

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10. Be Lazy

People work harder when they have high self-esteem because they’re not bogged down by doubts and complaints. Those with low self-esteem end up procrastinating and wasting their energy thinking about all the work they have to do rather than rolling up their sleeves and just getting it done.

This may also bounce off perfectionism. Perfectionists often feel intimidated by certain projects if they fear that they won’t be able to complete them perfectly. Tap into your confidence and simply do your best without worrying about a perfect outcome.

11. Shy Away from Risks

When you trust yourself, you’ll be willing to participate more in life. People with low self-esteem are always on the sidelines, waiting for the perfect moment to jump in. Instead of letting life pass you by, have confidence in your success and take the risks necessary to succeed.

12. Gossip

People with low self-esteem are always in other peoples’ business – they’re more interested in what everyone else is doing than themselves. People with high self-esteem are more interested in their own life and stay out of others’ affairs.

Instead of participating in idle gossip, talk about some positive news you heard recently, or that fascinating book you just finished. There’s plenty to talk about beyond what this or that person did wrong in their life.

The Bottom Line

Self-esteem is to success in life. People who maintain a healthy level of self-esteem believe in themselves and push themselves to succeed, while those with low confidence feel a sense of entitlement.

If you need a boost in your self-image and mental health, avoid negative self-talk and the other mistakes of people with low self-esteem. You’ll be amazed at the difference it makes.

More Tips on Building Confidence

Featured photo credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Psychology of Popular Media Culture: Social comparison, social media, and self-esteem
[2] Brain Pickings: Fixed vs. Growth: The Two Basic Mindsets That Shape Our Lives
[3] Forbes: Brene Brown: How Vulnerability Can Make Our Lives Better

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