So from time to time I get described as stubborn, or very stubborn, from my friends and peers. I've accepted that I am, but I have a hard time wrapping my head around when exactly it can be bad, when it can be good, and how to deal with it without sacrificing my principles. A lot of the times when I'm stubborn I feel there's nothing wrong, that I'm right, that I'm just sticking to my principles or to my strongly held beliefs. I'm not the best at debating, so sometimes I wonder if this is a compensating mechanism, but dammit I know I'm right (I'm really not arrogant, honest :) ).
How do I unpick this? Should I unpick this? I'm curious for opinions from other people, both stubborn ones and ones that have to deal with stubborn people from the outside. When is it good? When is it bad? How to dial it down? How do you talk it down from the inside? How much do you accept that's just how someone is, how much do you try and change?
posted by Elfasi to Human Relations (21 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Generally I find myself stubborn with opinions, but I would also describe myself as open minded, open to new ideas. Just the opinions and values that run very deep, like sexuality, morality, ethics, life choices, politics, sometimes I can really find myself cornered. More often than not, the person challenging my views has diametrically opposite views, either for themselves or of me, and my stubbornness kicks in, and I dig in, and defend my corner, but ultimately the other person gives up in disgust and dismisses me as so stubborn. I try to understand their view, I'm more apt to say 'Well, I'm not sure it's really like that' rather than 'Nope you're wong'.
There's other areas of life, where I've made a decision to conduct myself a certain way, live a certain way, do a specific thing, not do a specific thing, and when that decision is made, I stick to it, stubbornly. I put a lot of thought and agonising into that decision, wasn't just made on a whim, and I'm not about to just change it because you're telling me I'm a stubborn fool. And the harder you push, the harder I dig in. You can change my mind, but pushing me into the corner is not the way.
I don't arrive at my opinions, my beliefs, my decisions easily, or without a lot of thought, so that stubbornness really kicks in if I'm challenged in an overly confrontational way. So how do you really judge, objectively, where to draw the line? When is it enough stubbornness and when is it too much? When are you a pushover with no courage of your convictions and when are you the stubborn fool? How do you decide, stubborn people and stubborn victims?