Why The Word “But” Is A Dream Killer

The word 'but' is a dream killer

How many times a day do you use the word but when talking about your dreams? 

At least once or twice a week I listen to Les Brown, who is a motivational speaker. I came across a video that someone had put together of him speaking. To say that it was great would be an understatement.  It was phenomenal. (The link to the video is below.)

He spoke about how we all have the opportunity to achieve  our dreams and how we sabotage them on a daily basis.  How? By using the word but when we talk about our goals.

You have heard it before:

“I would apply for that job, but I know I won’t get it.”

“I want to run a business, but I don’t have the background.”

“I want to help people, but I am not successful enough and no one knows me.”

We have all heard others say it.  We have even said it a lot ourselves.  A lot of times we have no idea that we had even used the word.  I realized that subconsciously we all use the word as a safety mechanism.  Think about it, by using the word but we let ourselves off the hook.  We give ourselves a pass to stay stagnant and content.  To stay comfortable in our little box.

I am not saying there is anything wrong with that.  There is nothing wrong with being content and comfortable.  But let it be temporary.  Let it last for a very short time and then get out there and work on these dreams.  Fully engage in what you want to accomplish.  And when it gets tough?

Don’t use the word but so you can quit. The word but is safe.  It allows us to be normal. It allows us to quit quietly and think the world doesn’t notice. Well sorry, but you are not quitting (like how I used the word?). You are not letting a dream that you probably had for years fall by the wayside because you don’t want to try.

I once read about a Navy SEAL and he said when you want to quit, you’re only at about 40%.  Meaning you are not even close to being done. You still have 60% of will, determination, grit, and effort left in you to achieve what you set out to do.

Don’t let but be a dream killer for you. Don’t let it stop you in your tracks when you are just getting started.  Don’t let your naysayers and haters have the satisfaction.  Normally I would say don’t worry about them, but yeah, not today.  Prove them wrong.

Most importantly prove yourself wrong in the process.  You can do this. You and I are not built to fail.  Nor are we built to give up on our dreams. We are built to say yes to our own aspirations.  To say yes to the journey, it will take to achieve our heart’s desires.

I know you already believe in yourself.  So what are you waiting for?

Before you go, check out the video that inspired this post.   Live your dreams, my friends.  






24 thoughts on “Why The Word “But” Is A Dream Killer

  1. Very interesting perspective. I definitely catch myself doing this every so often! Lately, I’m trying to be more confident in myself + my talents + I’m all about proving that I can do the things I’ve always wanted to, or never thought I could. Which is good! BUT…I’m going to have to take note the next time I “but” myself. It definitely still happens. Thank you for sharing! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You made some great points about the word “but”. I think I do overuse that word- partly to protect my ego. Since you’ve now brought this to my attention I will be thinking about how often I say it and what message I am delivering.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, the word is an ego protector. We try to downplay it but nothing is great about not fulfilling our dreams. And “but” is a definitive dream killer. I am being cautious about when, where, and how I use the word, too. Thanks for reading and commenting:)


  3. Great post Antonio. I’ve had problems with the word “but” before, like saying, “I would like to do this and that but I don’t have enough money.” Now, I find that if I just add another “but”, I can get back on track again, like saying, “but I don’t have enough money, but here’s something I can do about that.”

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I know the words we use to describe ourselves and our lives can be more powerful than we think. I have never thought about how often I use but to avoid taking the risk of just going after my dream.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think if you consciously try and count the times you will be amazed at it honestly. I did and got to about five then I knew it was a problem. That is why I wrote the post. Thanks for commenting Jennifer. I like your blog, too! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for the kick in the pants. I’ve not put the time into my writing that I should. I think I will be saying BUT a whole lot less. I like yours as well. I’ve written about complaining a few times. Didn’t realize how many times a day I did that until I tried to stop.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I have combed the word “but” from my lexicon. It is a set-up for failure. It evinces roadblocks and caps potential before it is even unleashed. There is little that we cannot accomplish; we must dwell in the spirit of expectancy. go for it, I say! Ain’t no ifs, ands, or buts about it! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is soooo incredibly inspiring! Thank you, thank you! Every word rings true. Yes, I’ve talked about my dreams with a ‘but’ a bazillion times without even realizing it! It totally suffocates the dream. It keeps us stuck in our comfort zones. It stops us from trying new things. This is a huge opener. It’s such a small thing, but if we stopped using that damned word, it would make such a difference! Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.