skip to Main Content

Decrease the Size of your ‘BUT’

Why is your BUT so BIG?!?

thinking black woman

Has someone ever asked you this question? If so, were you offended? If could be that you thought of a certain reality star or hip hop artist and was not amused by the comparison. What would you think if the question was not referencing your physical appearance, rather it was in reference to your goals and how you went about achieving them? If we were to discuss your goals, habits, and dreams – how would decreasing the size of your BUT help you?

Have you ever asked yourself any of these questions:

I want to make more money…(BUT)…?

I want to start my own business…(BUT)…?

I want to go back to school….(BUT)…?

Have you noticed a trend? All of us have dreams. We know what we would like to accomplish in our lifetime. What is the problem? It is very common for people to talk themselves out of achieving their goals and living their dreams because they insert ‘BUT’ in a place it does not belong. Why do they allow that to happen? This process simply allows them to remain liberated from commitment and accountability. That word releases them from confronting their fears and doubts. For many, the fear of failure is equivalent to a slow death., the irony is when they allow the fear of failure to hinder them from giving their best, that is when they begin to experience a slow death. Their joy will diminish and the light that we all possess will slowly fade. Failure is important for growth. That is why we ‘fail forward’. It means we make repeated attempts to complete a task or achieve a goal.

Here is an example of an individual that failed forward.

There was a woman that decided to write a book, but in the early stages of the manuscript’s development, her mother passed away. She was devastated as she was very close to her mother. She continued writing her book, but after a few months decided to accept a job in another country as an English professor. Soon after, she began experiencing problems within her marriage and divorced.  It was around this time she lost her position at the university. At this point, she was young, unemployed divorcee with a baby girl to support. She ended up returning back to her country and living on welfare. This was a major setback, but she rather than considering herself a failure, she looked as this problem as an opportunity to complete her book. After some time, she completed the manuscript and shopped it around to a host of publishing houses, but none of them were interested. The responses she received were highly critical of her work. ‘The book is too long for the targeted audience’ and ‘no one buys these types of books’ are examples of some of the responses she received. Eventually, one publisher brought the manuscript and history was made in 1997 when Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was published. J.K. Rowling, the author of the book went on to publish 400 million books. Imagine if she had allowed her fears and the adverse situations she found herself in to impede her finishing her manuscript.

Ms. Rowling and many people like her refuse to allow other people’s negative think, self-limiting fears, or adverse situations to stop them reaching their goals and living their dreams. By decreasing their use of the word BUT and replacing it with I WILL, they were able to achieve their desired outcomes.

What about you?

Would you like to live the life you want? Have tried writing down your dreams and then adding a completion date turning into a goal? A goal broken down into steps become a plan. A plan backed by action makes the dream a reality. Chase after your dreams like your life depended on it. Stop saying BUT and start saying I WILL.

Remember the first three questions? Now, you will say it like this:

I want to make more money AND I WILL.

I want to start my own business AND I WILL.

I want to go back to school AND I WILL.

Your dreams, your goals, your plans…YOUR SUCCESS!

No IFs, No ANDs….and definitely NO BUTS!!!








Adrian Jefferson Chofor is a professional with over 25 years in the publishing, academia, and healthcare industries. She is also a former expatriate having lived in Italy, Spain, and Germany where she conducted workshops and seminars for executives and professionals. Adrian is an entrepreneur and a certified life coach with a passion for helping others through public speaking, training and coaching.

Leave a Reply

Back To Top
%d bloggers like this: