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Unavailable

 

Techniques > Resisting persuasion >  Unavailable

Method | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Method

If they need to meet up with you, be unavailable. If you are just so busy, they can’t meet with you for, say a month or two. And then a week or even a day before the meeting, call to say sorry, but something unexpected has come up. Or you can even just not turn up for their meeting with no apologies or maybe sending a scribbled note (afterwards) ‘sorry, thought it was tomorrow’.

You can also be unavailable by not talking with people. If you are at home, don't answer the door or telephone. If you are in the office, hide away from your desk or get your secretary to fend off visitors. Don't answer emails or voicemails.

The ultimate is to move away and change your name (which some who want to avoid the law or persistent others will do).

Example

Yes, delighted to meet...hmm...not this week...nor next week...

Sorry, not now. Try tomorrow some time.

You'll be lucky. I'm already booked for the foreseeable future.

Discussion

Being unavailable is a very common game in organizational settings, where it is a legitimate method (and where many other methods are not allowed). It even is a way of praising yourself by saying you are very busy doing important work.

Being unavailable also is a subtle insult, saying that the other person is less important than the work you are doing.

A step beyond being unavailable is to hide behind a secretary or other person who acts as a gatekeeper, making you unavailable by default and deciding for whom you are available.

See also

Procrastination

 

 

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