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Thanking Someone in Advance Can Be Rude

I think I’ve seen or heard the term “Thanks in advance”  or  “cooperation in advance” five or six times this week alone.

On the surface, it sounds like a nice thing to say but when you dig to the root, I believe it’s a veiled form of manipulation.

Thanking me in advance assumes that I am going to do what you ask.  While I’m agreeable guy and likely to do what others ask, I’m sure there will come a time when I just might opt not to do what you ask of me.

“Hey Brad.  Would you mind taking out my trash while I’m on vacation?  Thanks in advance.”

Wait!  Don’t thank me yet.  What if I’m not home?  What if I’m busy that day?  What if I’m not speaking to you because you still have my hedge trimmers?  What if I don’t feel like it?

I think “thanks in advance” is a term that used to manipulate you into performing the request.

“Hi there.  Mow my lawn, please.  Thanks in advance!

See?  My ‘thank you’ places the request in a state of assumptive compliance.  I’ve already thanked you so you’re answer has to be yes, right?

If you want to be polite, make the request, wait for it to be done, then send a polite “thank you.”

Think on it.  You’re welcome… in advance.

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