Since nobody likes to hear negative answers, the word "no" has almost disappeared from polite conversations. Instead of rejecting requests straight away, people often make vague promises or simply reply that they don't know. Even when refusals are uttered, they are usually phrased as "possibly, but not at this moment."
The importance of saying no to things that don't work
At least, outright
rejections can push you to correct your approach. In contrast,
indefinite answers only lead to doubt and paralysis. When someone tells
you that he is not interested at this moment, he is implying that he
might change his mind in the future. Is he inviting you to try again
next month? How much time should you devote to pursuing undefined
There is hardly a bigger waste of time than
waiting for future events that never come. Vague promises of attention,
advice, jobs, funding, or friendship should not be taken seriously. You
have to face the fact that, instead of substance, you are being served
worthless hope. Do not expect much from such assurances. Instead, move
on and search for better opportunities.
Writing off liars and false promises
In those cases, you
should not only write off the promise but also the person who made it.
Speculating about the seriousness of empty words is unproductive. You
will be much better off if you devote your energies to seeking
alternative solutions. Take action and do not waste a minute. You will
be able to achieve much more on your own.
The same principle
applies to the cardinal purpose of philosophy, that is, the search of
happiness. Although many ideas, groups, and individuals promise
well-being and prosperity, few deliver anything worthwhile. Excuses and
apologies are the likely output of unrealistic assurances.
story will play out in an all-too-predictable way. If you ask to receive
your due, you will hear that the time is not ripe. You will be asked to
be patient and wait a little longer. Your rational demands will be
played down as immature. Your claims will be ignored and your plan of
Do not wait for happiness. Take action now
In that context, you need to ask yourself how
long you are willing to wait for happiness. Will you delay your dreams
until all pieces of the puzzle fall into place? Are you ready to make
further investments in projects that fail to generate profits? How many
chances are you willing to give people who repeatedly let you down?
hope is universally presented as virtue, this should not always be the
case. When hope is not based on facts and logic, it can destroy your
life. Irrational expectations can make you waste your days waiting.
Inconsistent wishes can pull your forces in opposite directions.
Exaggerated expectations may submerge you into conflicts that cannot be
For more information about rational living and personal development, I
refer you to my book The
10 Principles of Rational
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