Thursday, September 24, 2009

Professional bluffers?

I came across the term, professional bluffers, at Richard Skaare's blog - SkaareWorks PocketChange (

According to the blog entry, professional bluffers are people who know "...their stuff but didn’t practice it—inspiring marriage counselors in broken relationships, empowerment evangelists who never would accept contrarian ideas..."

I know people like this. They wax eloquently and long on topics such as how to live a more enlightened life and yet, rarely do what they're preaching. I like the phrase, "professional bluffer", much nice than "hypocrite", eh?

I took this thought inwards and realized that sometimes, I'm a professional bluffer (sigh). For example, I always tell people that saying no to people at work selling stuff is simple. Just say no (politely, of course). I even have the arrogance to think that I adhere to that principle very closely.

Bzzzzzt! Not true, oh greendragon.

Earlier this week, a co-worker gave me some cosmetic samples to try (yes, I knew she sold them, no, I never asked to try them). So, I tried them. Feeling that the polite thing to do was to let her know I did try them and that I thought they were nice (I did, but I didn't ask to buy anything). Next thing I know, I'm accepting an invitation to lunch so she can show me the whole line of products, blah, blah blah. And, of course, I'll purchase something (the products really are nice...but I suspect they'll be expensive).

I've rationalized this as part of the need to start bonding with my new co-workers -- something I haven't put a lot of effort into yet. But, the truth is, I just felt I couldn't say no.

There you go...a professional bluffer. A person who talks about how saying No is not terribly difficult. And yet, I ignored my own rules in this case. I need to keep an eye on this to make sure I stick ot my principles. Otherwise, who knows how much junk I might end up buying!


Anonymous said...

Perhaps the greatest professional bluffer was Mother Theresa,8599,1655415,00.html.

greendragon said...

mmm. I hadn't read that article before. Professional Bluffer, or just a martyr? It's hard for me to understand why someone would devote a life time to something that she didn't really believe in. Sad, really.

Anonymous said...

You are much to hard on yourself. We all aspire to having the "ideal" life. The hard part is practicing it. :)

greendragon said...

Perhaps I am being hard on myself. :-)

I'm not necessarily trying for the ideal. I know that if I want people with integrity in my life, I must BE a person with integrity. I try to be aware of those moments when I violate the Horton Hears a Who philosophy ("...say what I meant and mean what I say...").

Anonymous said...

Too hard on yourself and your friends. Integrity does not equate to perfection. Integrity may be more fairly questioned in criminals and people who lack ethics, but people who fall short of their beliefs? Unless you are a secluded monk, that's all of us.

Maybe try making fun of them and yourself and getting them to laugh at their foibles and yours. Humor may be very healing and a good antidote. Your friends want to be accepted and cherished, warts and all, as I know you do to. I think you might look fabulous in a monk's robe. :)

greendragon said...

Dear Anonymous,

I have no idea who you are, but I must say I'm baffled as to how a post about me trying to live up to my own standards led to a discussion that I'm too hard on my friends.

No, I'm not looking for perfection in any one. I do, indeed, accept and cherish my friends. And I don't have to make fun of them to do that.

Your hostility is puzzling. Did you think I was referring to you (which would be odd considering I suspect you're not someone who knows me)? The post was about me and the standards I'm trying to set for myself.