Accelerating Possibilities

Samantha Campbell
Friday, July 14, 2017

Recently, I attended a motivational talk with guest speaker, Chic Thompson. He spoke about how people often respond to a new idea with “Yes, but...” We tend to think of all the reasons why an idea will not work. That ‘but’ stops the thought process. Instead, Chic says we should try responding with “Yes, and…” This phrase invites the speaker to keep going, which accelerates possibilities and allows a dialogue.

I have found this idea of stopping at ‘but’ to be quite true, and something that I have done with my own ideas a lot.  For example, I will come up with an invention in my head and get super excited and feel ready to go on Shark Tank right away!  But then my mind says, “but….”  This is mostly because I would fear the legal aspect, budget limitations, or possibly just being overwhelmed with the process and not knowing where to start.

Instead, I want to try the ‘Yes, and’ method. Instead of thinking about all the things that could go wrong, I’ll explore all the things that could go right. I challenge you to try it too. Even if you don’t have an idea for a new invention, try it out on a work related challenge. Like Chic said, “Be curious first, critical second!” Change your mindset to encourage creativity, and see if you can overcome the obstacle by responding with “yes, and...” You might be surprised at the results!