Example Of Such A Situation: The individual in question works for a company and he intends to resign voluntarily because he feels that he may be asked to resign by the company management. This is because, the individual is not sure if his work has made a positive impact on the company's profit margin.He does not want to take any chance & is planning to resign.However, he realises his decision may or may not be the right decision.

So,is there a word that describes such an individual who is unable to take the correct decision because he cannot understand that particular unfolding situation correctly? In other words the person is failing to understand something which should be obvious.

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    I would say "normal". No one fully understands "the situation".
    – Hot Licks
    Commented May 10, 2016 at 12:17
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    It is normal to get "confused."
    – vickyace
    Commented May 10, 2016 at 12:48
  • This case seems to me to boil down to an issue of self-confidence and the fear of failure.
    – WS2
    Commented May 10, 2016 at 12:54
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    The choice of word varies depending on our degree of sympathy for the person. Do you think that it's normal that somebody wouldn't understand the situation in question? Or do you think that the person is failing to understand something which should be obvious? Commented May 10, 2016 at 13:18
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    The perception of individuals under pressure varies greatly. Some people have the ability to assess a situation in one glance and understand it, while others have their perception impeded by previous experience with the factors involved. (Oddly, folks with ADHD are better at "situation at a glance" assessments.) What "should be obvious" varies enormously from one person to the next.
    – Hot Licks
    Commented May 10, 2016 at 22:40

3 Answers 3


The person is befuddled by his situation because he is too close to it. Befuddled, defined by The Free Dictionary:

confused, muddled, perplexed

perplexed by many conflicting situations or statements; filled with bewilderment

Befuddled is often used in the sense of "stupefied by alcoholic drink", but a person can be stone cold sober and yet befuddled by the complexity of a situation in which, for whatever reason, he cannot think clearly. In the OP's example, the person in question cannot think clearly because he cannot distance himself from the problem.


"clueless" may be a good choice.


Although, "clueless" may be more suited to someone who doesn't even realise that there is a situation - ie someone who is totally unaware of the crisis which is unfolding around them.

For someone who knows there is a crisis, and has been thinking about what to do, but can't decide, you could say they are torn, or caught in a dilemma (or "on the horns of a dilemma"). These words are much more sympathetic, unlike "clueless" which is very insulting.


It sounds as if he is blind to the ways of the world.

It's an old phrase and variations can be found in the Bible and many other places. It can be literal, or a bit figurative, or completely figurative. It implies a lack of awareness that is unfortunate, disadvantageous or pitiable. It can also be applied to children to show their naivety.

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