The 2 Words I’m Getting Rid of in My Life


Over the years I’ve been accustomed to 2 of the most used words by many people I talk to, know and listen to. I use them myself. Here are the words and why I want to get rid of them from my dictionary.

I would love to help, but I am busy

Why using the word “but” is so negative

Anyone who speaks English will use this word and likely extensively too. The main problem with “but” is that it is a contradiction. When we use the word “but” we are stating something opposite to what we just said.

Take the above sentence as an example. First I state my good intention on helping, then I provide a contradictory condition on why I actually can’t help. The outcome is negative.

The main problem I have with the contradiction is that its use over time will associate conditions to everything we say. Nothing will be unconditional anymore. When we state something positive then connect it with a “but”, we are conveying that the positive statement is only true conditionally to the following criticism or negative statement.

In the reverse, when we connect a negative statement with a positive one, it often feels like a consolation to “make us feel better”. A typical example would go something like:

I saw your presentation. You looked so nervous, your voice was too weak and you spoke for too long, but awesome presentation! 

It is an infectiously negative mindset which is unhealthy and builds up over time.

Why always being “busy” does not make you more productive

Many recent studies shows that being busy does not equate to be productive. Being overly busy can kill our productivity and creativity altogether.

It’s an art to not be busy in today’s world. We are juggling family, life goals, friends, business and everything else all at once. When we are “busy” we omit many things that are valuable to us:

  • It’s hard to be creative
  • We sacrifice our qualities such as patienceconsistency and potential
  • We often confuse motion for progress, make excuses, try to multi-task and fail to prioritise properly
  • We forget to enjoy

Most importantly, when we are busy we forget to think. We are busy for a reason, it is a reaction and result of an initiative or goal that we set out to achieve. Yet when we are fully immersed in our “busyness” we forget our goal and the reasoning behind them.

Do not forget what you are trying to achieve; all the interim tasks are just that, building blocks to your goals. Whether it is to better provide for your family or to invest in yourself, never lose sight of what matters.

Us humans are fascinating creatures, we often do not appreciate how valuable some things are until it is lost. I say, start appreciating them now, before it’s too late.

Take-awaysIt does not matter how “busy” we are, some things always take priority even if they are not urgent. Do not confuse urgency with priority, even when they do overlap at times. Do not lose sight of what is truly valuable and stop making excuses by putting a “but” after everything we say.

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