“No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path.” ~ Buddha
Have you ever noticed how the word “but” can can change the meaning and context of communication and self-talk in subtle but distinct ways?
“I’m sorry – but it’s not really my fault!” – redirecting accountability
“I know this isn’t good for me – but it’s just this once.” – rationalizing
‘But’ can be a powerful word for such a small one. Often, using ‘but’ contradicts or rationalizes the intent and context the speaker. However it also can affect the expectations of the listener.
I was on my yoga mat the other day thinking about this, after my lovely teacher Kim (ALL Yoga) spent some one-on-one time with me to bring me back to the simple joy of yoga – all forms of yoga. In trying to settle my mind during my practice and especially savasana, the word “but” kept floating in. “I should spend more time on my mat, … but I am so busy at work; but I have so much to do around here; but my friends or family need me to do this or that.” “I’d try that, but I am not sure I can do it successfully.” But, but, BUT.
But can stop you from moving forward…as you rationalize you way into and out of scenarios. When challenged with chronic illness, the word but can become the crutch that stops us from trying new things, keeping up with the old, or moving out of the current comfortable (or not so comfortable) “status quo”. Sometimes this is good…however sometimes, we need to stop using “but” in order to change.
Did you know that the word “but” as is, in French, is pronounced more like “boo” (with more nasal intones) and means “goal”?
So you know what I decided to do? I decided to use the word “but” in the context of “goal”. As in: “I know I have challenges to face. But I know I can overcome them.”
Mon but dans la vie est de prendre bien soin de ma santé , de ma famille, et de mes amis.
How’s your “but” doing?
“Limitations live only in our minds. But if we use our imaginations, our possibilities become limitless.” ~ Jamie Paolinetti