The Importance of Being Pragmatic

Pragmatic is a word that describes a mind that cares more about practicality than it does about contemplating what could or should be. It is a trait that many people have and it can lead to great success in life if you know how to use it.

Pragmatism is just one of the traditions that make up philosophy and it can challenge your thoughts in a variety of ways. It is not reprehensible to dream about what you want your future to look like, but it is important to be pragmatic in your approach. For example, it is not a bad idea to plan on having a successful career and retiring on a yacht in the Caribbean, but you also should be realistic about how you are going to achieve those goals.

The key concepts of pragmatism first appeared in discussions at a group known as the Metaphysical Club, which started around 1870. Peirce and James participated in the group and both developed these ideas in their writings. However, by the end of the century, the ideas had lost momentum with the advent of self-consciously rigorous imports such as the logical positivism of Russell and Wittgenstein.

Some of the key ideas of pragmatism are that truth is an objective fact, that actions have consequences, that the world can be understood by examining its effects and that scientific knowledge has validity only insofar as it works. Another key concept is that hesitancy is a normal part of the human experience and that it’s important to be flexible when faced with unforeseen events.

Those who practice pragmatism are concerned more with what does work than what should or could be, and they are willing to discard old beliefs and traditions that don’t seem to be working anymore. This type of thinking can cause a clash of thought with those who are more fixed in their perceptions, and it may be difficult for them to adjust when things change.

When it comes to a professional project, the most important thing for those who are pragmatic is to keep an eye on what’s working and what’s not. This can help them to save time and money, which can be a big plus for most managers. It can also mean that they don’t take on projects that are not likely to succeed and could be a waste of resources.

When it comes to interpersonal communication, a pragmatist is less likely to understand the emotional blocks that might prevent others from moving forward on a task. This can lead to frustration and misunderstandings, particularly in situations where two pragmatic people must work together. It’s important to remember that everyone has different approaches to projects and the best way to work with someone else is to try to understand their point of view.