Dorks Delivered, Your Business Efficiency Experts
Free Assessment

‘Yes and’ and ‘Yeah but’ in Business With Ryan McDonald-Smith

‘Yes and’ and ‘Yeah but’ in Business With Ryan McDonald-Smith

In part two, Josh and Ryan McDonald-Smith from Younique Creation chat about his upcoming book, “The Yesand & Yeahbut”, the process behind it all, and how business owners can be like the characters in his book.



The Yesand and Yeahbut is pretty special to me. The more I think about it, the more there’s a lot of parallels between this and the Flawsome book.

When I was 16 years old, I had a personal development coach, a gentleman whom my parents employed to mentor me. He would always say words have power so start listening to things that you’re saying and what that actually does for your internal dialogue. When we make excuses for how things are, it’s usually prefaced by the word ‘but.’ So, if you come to me with a problem but you don’t really want to solve that problem, if I give you the solution, what do you normally reply with?

My mentor said the problem with the word ‘but’ is it negates everything that came before it. If I say, ‘Josh, that’s a really nice yellow t-shirt you’re wearing, but it makes you look pale and sickly.’ Are you thinking about the compliment that I gave you?

‘But’ negates whatever came before it, and I can see this working for children. It’s a word device for excuse-making. It’s basically telling the person, ‘Yeah, I hear you, but I don’t agree. I’m not open to a solution.’

This is kind of what the world has become. With disagreements on climate change or any modern social problem that we have at the moment, it’s always a ‘yes but’ approach rather than a ‘yes and.’


Do you need help setting up and maintaining your IT system? Contact our team of dorks.


Yes, and…

Yesand & Yeahbut by Ryan McDonald-Smith

I found out later that ‘yes and’ is a device used in improvisation. If we’ve been given a scene to play out, for instance, we’re in a zoo and a lion has escaped and you say, ‘Oh, no, a lion has come out of the zoo.’

It’s not going to make for a very entertaining show if I say, ‘Yeah, but it’s fine, he went over here.’ I have to take what you said, and I have to accept it. I have to say something like ‘Yes, and he’s coming this way and he looks really hungry.’ And that brings us into the story unfolding, growing and becoming more rich, interactive and fun.

Inspire children to be more proactive and help them develop a solution-oriented attitude.

Ryan’s next book The Yesand & Yeahbut is a colourful & fun way to help children create more positive and proactive statements by simply replacing the words ‘yeah, but’ with ‘yes, and’. Support The Yesand & Yeahbut.


The Story

I’ve come up with a cute story about this little creature called Yuno (as in someone ‘you know’), a young Yeahbut, who lives on a stinky, spiky flower. It’s supposed to represent a comfort zone. It’s not really that comfortable but Yeahbuts never go beyond their stinky little flowers in the dark, dank parts of the woods. All they do is complain. Everything is met with a ‘yeah but…’

Whereas Yessica the Yesand is a bright coloured species. They’re also these little cute bunk creatures. They fly above the treetops, and they get to see the stars and the moon. Check them out on Kickstarter! 

So, this little Yesand creature is learning how to fly, and she crash lands and knocks Yuno the Yeahbut out of his comfort zone. He helps Yessica the Yesand through three unique challenges, and eventually, at the end of their journey, Yuno turns into a Yesand, and his wings have grown big and strong, and he flies off to go see the stars.


Inspire children to be more proactive and help them develop a solution-oriented attitude.

Get the Book


Are you a ‘Yes and’ or ‘Yeah but’ in Business?

A man working remotely

I think that kind of ties into business and work-life balance. If you’re currently complaining about something in your situation:

Don’t count your demons until they hatch because it probably ain’t going to be as bad as you think it is.

Problem solving in business is possible in one way or another. And if not, you pivot because maybe it’s not about solving that problem. Maybe it is about not even dealing with it. Maybe it’s about just accepting it for what it is and pivoting. Focus on what you can change.

For example, if I can’t work remotely, what else could I change to help me work semi-remotely? Or maybe the problem isn’t actually wanting to work remotely. Maybe it’s just wanting to work less hours or work certain hours.


Are you a Yesand business owner who wants to solve business problems and fly above the treetops? Talk to a dork!


It’s Not About Positivism 

That’s what I’ve tried to infuse with this concept of the ‘yes and’ and ‘yes but’. I’ve done a ton of personal development, such as reading books from prolific authors like Think and Grow Rich and The Law of Attraction as well as going to seminars.

One of the problems that I had and I wasn’t matching up with reality is positivism.

I don’t know if anyone’s still really touting this. I think we’ve realised that always being positive and never being sad is not the true answer to happiness in life. ‘I have to only ever use positive words and say positive things.’ or ‘What I put out there will come to me. What if I start putting out bad thoughts and things?’

We can’t control bad thoughts. We can’t live a life that’s only positive, and the pursuit of happiness is futile. This could be a podcast for another day but what I think is really nice about this ‘yes and’ and ‘yeah but’ concept is it’s not about positivism. It’s just about your attitude.

You can have a negative attitude and a good attitude, but is it an attitude that is focused on solutions and is it going to get you out of whatever space of discomfort that you’re in? Is it an attitude about always growing and being better?


Have a solution-focused MSP by your side as you work on your business growth.


For the Children

There’s a hidden message for business owners in The Yesand and Yeahbut book, but my main goal is for the children, the next generation. It’s hard to teach new tricks to an old dog. It’s easier to teach our kids what not to do. You’re probably going to teach your daughter things about business that you wish you knew or maybe you won’t so they can make their own mistakes. But the book is really about reframing children.

I don’t give my daughter a chance to say, ‘this sucks’ and be fine with it. If you’re going to complain about something, do something about it. If you can’t do anything about it, don’t complain about it. I think a lot of business owners would love their staff to fly by those same rules: if there’s a problem, fix it or make it better. If you’ve got a complaint, how do we make it better?

Happiness is treated as a destination, but the pursuit of happiness is true happiness. The Yesand and Yeahbut is not about being happy. It’s about growth and development. It’s about continually moving forward—if you’re not happy with something, do something about it.

Check out Ryan’s new illustrated children’s book designed to help encourage kids to look for solutions rather than make excuses.


Check out this beautifully illustrated children’s book designed to help encourage kids to look for solutions rather than make excuses.
Learn More


About Ryan McDonald-Smith

Ryan McDonald-Smith and his beautiful wife, Bec, started Younique Creation in Brisbane. A couple of years ago, they moved over 7 hours Northwest onto a 2000+ acre cattle property for ‘tree’ change. With fewer distractions and less time spent going to and from meetings, they are able to focus more on their clients, improving their skills and adding greater value.


Share the Post:

Other Posts