Pat Dryburgh

Don’t Promise →

When someone asks something of me, I find it very difficult to say no. Sometimes it’s because I genuinely want to help, others because I feel obligated to say yes.

Too many times in my life I’ve let people down by failing to deliver on promises. More often than not, this is not for a lack of trying. It’s usually that I promise more time and energy than I have available.

This recently came up again when a friend introduced me to someone I’ve admired from afar for some time. My friend and this someone invited me to participate in a project they’re working on together and in my excitement to meet this someone, I agreed right away.

I had to send an email to this someone last week to let them know I was pulling out of the project (thankfully, he was forgiving and gracious and extended an invitation to rejoin their efforts if and when my schedule allows). If you’re a designer interested in blockchains and/or the music industry, do get in touch.

This reminder from Jason Fried that the pain of saying no is far less severe than the pain of failing to deliver on a promise strikes home with me. I want to ensure that the things I say yes to align with my ability to deliver.