The Gift of Fear

Intuition is always right in at least two important ways: It is always in response to something, and it always has your best interest at heart. Your intuition sends you different signals: Fear, apprehension, suspicion, hesitation, doubt, gut feelings, hunches, and curiosity.

The Gift of Fear

The amount of preparation appropriate for a given outcome is determined by evaluating the importance of avoiding or exploiting it and the cost and effectiveness of the strategies you’ll use.

Forced Teaming

Projection of a shared purpose or experience where none exists.

To establish premature trust because a we’re-in-the-same-boat attitude is hard to refuse without appearing rude.

Defense: Clear refusal to accept the partnership. “I did not ask for your help and I do not want it.” You might appear rude, but it’s a very small cost.

Charm and Niceness

To charm is to compel/force, to control by attraction.

Niceness doesn’t equal goodness. It’s a decision to be nice, a strategy of social interaction; it’s not a character trait. People seeking to control others almost always present the image of a nice person in the beginning.

Too many details

When people are telling the truth, they don’t feel doubted, so they don’t feel the need for additional, unnecessary details. It’s when they lie, they add too many details.

Too many details can make us lose the original context of the situation, which is a mistake.

Don’t lose the context. Remind yourself of where you are and your relationship with others around you.


A slight insult that is easy to refute. It’s the response itself that the typecaster seeks.

Defense: Stay silent. Don’t respond. Act as if the words weren’t even spoken.

If you engage, you can win the point, but you might lose something greater.

Loan Sharking

Someone is helping you because that would place you in his debt, and the fact that you owe a person something makes it hard to ask him to go away.

Defense: Tell them you didn’t ask for their help.

I promise/ I swear/ Trust me

Promises offer no guarantee. They are just hollow instruments of speech, showing nothing more than the speaker’s desire to convince you of something.

Ask yourself, why does this person need to convince me? (because he can see you have doubts)

Ignoring “No”

No is a word that must never be negotiated, because the person who chooses not to hear it is trying to control you. Declining to hear ‘no’ is a signal that someone is either seeking control or refusing to relinquish it.

The worst response when someone fails to accept your ‘no’ is to give weakening reasons for the refusal and then give in.

Defense: Never let a stranger talk you out of the word “no”. Be firm. Keep saying no repeatedly. You don’t have to give a reason.

Written on March 12, 2023