: slowness in acting or deciding due to doubt or uncertainty : indecision
He often reminded me of Orwell, not so much in feature as by a kind of hesitancy of manner, as if thinking for a second about the true meaning of what had been said before committing himself …—Anthony Powell
: lack of willingness or eagerness to do something : reluctance
She took that drastic step only with the greatest hesitancy.
This hesitancy to hire is one of the reasons companies are so unfazed by the possibility of the economy slowing.—Rob Norton
I was naturally a little hesitant about asking exactly how much he did earn—but there was no hesitancy on his part as he flourished his pay slip.—Richard Carver
his appointment to the superintendency was confirmed by the school board without the least hesitancy
his hesitancy in pulling over into the next lane while he had a chance resulted in him missing his exit
Recent Examples on the WebThe moderators have largely held their ground, with no hesitancy in cutting off loquacious candidates.—Eliza Collins, WSJ, 9 Nov. 2023 But along with the program’s trio of unlikely repertoire, the orchestra was also grappling with a uncharacteristic hesitancy.—Michael Andor Brodeur, Washington Post, 27 Oct. 2023 Another way to overcome vaccine fatigue or hesitancy is to focus on changing people’s attitudes—vaccination is necessary if people want to protect not just themselves, but also their families and communities, Schaffner explained.—Julia Landwehr, Health, 14 Nov. 2023 The group's leader, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, indicated his hesitancy to widen the war on Hamas's behalf recently in his first public comments since the outbreak of the war.—Mike Brest, Washington Examiner, 8 Nov. 2023 Advertisement Some event attendees admitted to feeling some hesitancy about the AI boom.—Brian Contreras, Los Angeles Times, 7 Nov. 2023 On top of the issues of accessibility and hesitancy seen in past vaccination campaigns, this was the first time such vaccines were part of the commercial market instead of being ordered, distributed and funded by the federal government.—Aria Bendix, NBC News, 27 Oct. 2023 Still, given the company’s tumultuous reputation under Musk, some users voiced their hesitancy to turn over their credit card information amid the news of the $1 plan.—Kylie Robison, Fortune, 17 Oct. 2023 This hesitancy, Musk seemed to feel, left open opportunities for people like him, who are willing to take risks and chase innovation in the financial sector.—Ashley Belanger, Ars Technica, 27 Oct. 2023 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hesitancy.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.