Sunday, December 24, 2006

You Either Don't Care or You're Afraid

There are only two basic reasons why people don't ask questions of other people - they don't care about that person's answer or they're afraid of that person's answer.

There could be lots of reasons you don't care. For example: I don't ask my company’s IT guy (Nick Burns; The Company's Computer Guy as I like to call him) anything, because I don't really care what his answer is, because I'm pretty sure I know more than he does. The tailgating jack-A behind me on the freeway? I don't really care what his opinion of my driving is.

There could also be multitude of reasons as to why you'd be afraid of someone else's answer. Maybe it would be insulting or the truth would be too hard to hear (this is more likely). I work for a small family-owned business (worst kind of business, too), the two co-owner brothers NEVER ask anyone what they feel is wrong with company. Are they apathetic or afraid? I haven't decided. They're both hugely egotistical, so maybe they don't care. Or maybe they don't want to have to deal with criticism (which is a neutral word that gets a bad connotation, by the way) because it would show that they're not as good as they see themselves.

This is true on a personal level, within relationships, whatever. One person doesn't ask important questions of the other because: they don't care or they're afraid of the answer.


Spencer said...

I think that there are probably many sub-categories within the "afraid" series of reasonging. One of which is that every question implies a previous thought or thought process that has brought about a certain question. Realizing this, we sometimes fear that they will know what we've been thinking.

Nathan said...

I would agree with you. Fear is a huge motivating factor.