John's Blog

The Blog of John Gibson, PhD

The Blog of John Gibson, PhD

Yes, but...

Yes, I see what you're saying, but I already tried that and it didn't work.
Yes, what you're saying makes sense, but you don't understand…
Yes, thank you for the input, but let me explain…
Yes, but I've already tried
everything… and nothing helped.

Yes, but.

Two little words that keep us stuck.

Instead of changing, we rationalize, minimize, or make excuses. Sometimes we just circle back around and re-state the problem. Or complain about it again. Human beings are notoriously self-consistent, even when it hurts us.

But if we are to make progress on our problems, we have to move through "yes, but" and tolerate the discomfort, anxiety, or uncertainly that comes with psychological work.

We must try new behaviors.
We must experiment with small changes.
We must act "as if"' the change we desire is already true.

Which is not to stay that progress will be even or that setbacks will not occur. Undoubtedly, they will. But that doesn't necessarily mean we're taking the wrong actions. Sometimes the trick is simply to persist.

"Yes, but…" will no longer suffice.

No more excuses.
No more rationalizations.

We must take responsibility for our problems and begin the journey towards a better life.