It’s true that our stubbornness comes from a deep sense of integrity.
It’s true that our unyielding personality has served us well in many parts of our lives.
And it’s true that there is no reason to reject healthy expressions of pride just because we don’t want to appear arrogant.
But it’s also true that stubbornness can keep us lonely. When the tyranny of our individuality starts to rule us, and we are tempted to take our secret special separateness and run into the corner, that’s when our dogged determination bites us in the ass.
It reminds me of a former coworker, who was quite possibly the most stressed out employee in the tristate area. She carried so much anxiety that the rest of the office had to take antidepressants just make it through staff meetings.
What’s interesting is, it wasn’t a biological precondition, but a choice she made every day. She knew she was a stubborn person who acted bluntly and reflexively towards her coworkers, and that caused problems time and time again. She knew that her obstinacy caused misunderstandings that she would have to carefully manage, and that led to daily tension with the team.
But as she famously said to me, those are problems worth having.
To which we all responded, wow, really? Shouldn’t we be trying to create fewer unnecessary pressures and stressors, not the other way around?
Chambers was right when he observed, there are wedges of obstinacy where our pride splits at the throne.
Stubbornness truly can keep us lonely. In a world where shared effort and cooperative spirit is one of the few things we can count on to move our species forward, perhaps there are more important things that our pride right now.
LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Do you have the capacity to respond flexibly to what the world hurls at you?
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That Guy with the Nametag
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