How is personal life going?
Where are you planning to go this weekend?
What amount of money did you make last year?
Well… don’t worry, I am not asking you any of the personal or sensitive questions like a few above.
But I can tell you for sure you will be in situations somewhere down the line where you will want to avoid answering questions which are personal or may be sensitive.
Hey everyone out there,
Welcome back to your home ‘Your English Vocabulary’- The place for every English learner who has struggled a lot with their English skills and wants to improve their spoken English and vocabulary.
I hope you have enough grasp of the idea what we are going to learn in today’s blog. You know what it is?
Yes, you are right.
Today we will learn about 7 different phrases you can use to avoid answering questions.
So without further ado, let’s get down to the business:
7 ways to avoid answering a question
1: Can we talk about something else?
Explanation: I would rather use it in an informal situation such as friends, girlfriend or someone you are really close to. This expression in itself conveys to change the topic of discussion, so you expect the listener to be wise enough to understand and stop talking about the present topic or question as it might be hurting you or you might be hesitant talking about it.
A: So how long have you been together? I still can’t believe you both are breaking up.
B: Can we talk about something else?
2: It’s none of your business.
Explanation: You may use it in situations when the person is continuously bothering you by asking questions about your life that you are not comfortable to reveal. It is quite rude, so I would suggest you never use it in formal situations.
A: How much did you make last month from your investments?
B: It’s none of your business.
3: No comment!
Explanation: You would have surely heard this phrase being used by celebrities in TV interviews and press conferences many a time. It is simply a way to avoid answering in public as it can cause a controversy. People also use this when you can say something critical or negative, but you don’t wanna say it directly.
A: What’s your opinion about the present government?
B: No comment!
4: Sorry, but that’s personal.
Explanation: It’s a self-explanatory phrase which I think needs no explanation for its meaning. Using this you directly convey the one who is asking the question that you are not comfortable revealing the personal things to them.
A: What did happen yesterday? You seemed quite upset at the party.
B: Sorry, but that’s personal. By the way, everything is good now.
5: Let’s wait and see.
Explanation: You can use this when you want the other person to wait and see the answer personally rather than asking for your answer to the question.
John: Are you coming to his birthday party tonight?
Michelle: Let’s wait and see.
6: Sorry, but that’s confidential.
Explanation: There are certain business situations where you don’t have the permission to reveal the information to someone else. It is that situation where you can use this phrase to avoid answering their question.
A: Can you tell me with who is your team partnering in this contract?
B: I am sorry, but that’s confidential.
7: I am not at liberty to say anything.
Explanation: It has the same meaning as the above phrase. It is a polite way of not answering the question when you don’t have the freedom or authority to give out any information.
Will: How much are you thinking of investing in this project?
John: Sorry Will, but I am not at liberty to say anything.
How many of them do you use while speaking?
Lemme know in the comments section below about your views and suggestions or email me at [email protected]
Hurrah! We learned seven different phrases to avoid answering a question, so at least you won’t be avoiding regular boring phrases like “I don’t wanna tell” or anything else.
Please go through this article once again and learn all the idiomatic expressions off by heart so it becomes a part of your active vocabulary.
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Till then, take care and?