Problem solving? Think “Yes, and…” not “No, but …”

Language matters when you’re problem solving – generating information and ideas.
Focus on “Yes, and,” rather than “No, but.” The “Yes, and” mindset encourages people to expand their thoughts, which is necessary during certain stages of creative problem solving.

Using the word “but” – preceded by “yes” or “no” – ends conversation, and often negates what’s come before it.

“Yes, and…” lowers your ego and helps you hear other perspectives with openness.

This mindset also opens up your world to more possibilities. You don’t just shoot down ideas; you are allowing them to build into something that may just work well for you.

It also works very well in conflict. The other person feels that you are giving their opinions credence. It’s a softening mechanism.

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