“I am on vacation and it is raining.”
“I am on vacation but it is raining.”
These are two same sentences – just the two normal people talking about vacation and rain, right?
Give them a moment and you’ll realize that these two sentences are worlds apart. These are the windows of one’s mind, their perspective.
The difference is the use of conjunction – and vs but. ‘And’ is used to connect words of the same part of speech, clauses, or sentences that are to be considered jointly while ‘But’ is typically used to introduce contrasting thoughts.
Simply put, one presents an additional idea to be considered jointly, the other stops a thought in its tracks and introduces something else.
And vs But – applies to a perspective too!
There are two types of people in this world – the ‘And’ people and the ‘But’ people.
The former see life as a series of opportunities. These are the folks who’ll be singing “I am on vacation AND it’s raining.” Because they focus on the positive aspects of most situations. The latter see life as a series of obstacles, almost every day of it. As if the world is out there to ruin whatever they’re trying to do.
An ‘And’ person will see a traffic jam as an opportunity to put their feet up, relax and listen to music. A ‘But’ person will see the same situation as something that is preventing them from doing what they want or needs to do. And therefore they’re stressed, unhappy. ‘And’ people take control of every situation, even if it’s something they can’t control. They make the best of every moment and are constantly looking for ways to improve things.
One may feel this is an oversimplification and life is too complex for us to control it or even make a complete sense of it.
Well, that’s the point!
Being an ‘And’ person does not equate to living a fool’s paradise. The ‘And’ people are not just ignorantly happy through it all. They have a positive outlook and tend to see the good in everything around them, but they’re also realistic. ‘And’ people know that there is no such thing as perfection, so they don’t expect themselves or others to be perfect.
‘And’ people find gratification in small victories.
‘But’ people find their happiness in external sources. And once that happiness is taken away, they’re left feeling lost and confused. They don’t have the internal resources to fall back on like ‘And’ people do.
The ‘And’ people learn from their mistakes and move on. They don’t keep score – they let things go and focus on finding solutions rather than dwelling over problems.
‘And’ people have a knack for being content with what they have, whereas ‘But’ people constantly feel like something is missing in their lives. And instead of grabbing life by the horns, they let life grab them by the throat.
‘And’ people tend to be more optimistic, while ‘But’ people are pessimistic.
The next time something doesn’t go your way, ask yourself which type of person you are – an ‘And’ or a ‘But’. And remember that it’s not about being perfect, it’s about having the right perspective. And that’s something anyone can learn how to do.
It all starts with making the decision to be an ‘And’ person. And once you make that decision, everything else will follow.
‘And’ vs ‘But’. The choice is yours.