I don’t know about you, but stubborn people really get on my nerves. I know, we’re all stubborn to some degree, but most people are open-minded and willing to compromise. But what do you do about the person who refuses to?
Some people believe that stubbornness isn’t a negative trait. They see being stubborn as having a strong personality or having strong convictions. Maybe. But, I’m not so sure. I’ve known stubborn people and when I say stubborn, I mean obstinately so. They’re bull-headed and often times, aggressive and arrogant. Some of these people border on pathological — no matter how wrong they are, they refuse to accept that their views are…well, just wrong. I’m confident you’ve known people like this.
I tend to believe, and this is through personal experience, that pathologically stubborn people have a negative self-view — they’re perhaps insecure or feel intimidated by opposing view points. Maybe they feel that, no matter how wrong they may know themselves to be, they have to dig in and refuse to listen or learn, because they’re afraid to admit they’re wrong? I don’t know, but dealing with immovably stubborn people can be a real drain. What makes it worse is that some experts believe that stubbornness is a choice, so there’s that to consider as well.
How to Deal with Stubborn People
having or showing dogged determination not to change one’s attitude or position on something, especially in spite of good arguments or reasons to do so.
Every situation and relationship is unique, so there may be no perfect method for dealing with them. There are however, some great techniques, including:
1. One, Two…move on: With very stubborn people, arguing can wear you down — for some reason, they seem to thrive on the arguing. So, make your point, listen, re-state your opinion and back it up with fact…if they still refuse to listen and learn, move on. To continue will just stress you out, so why bother. If they don’t want to change, let them continue on believing as they do.
2. No Arguing: Keep your cool and don’t let the discussion descend into a bitter argument. Be respectful and willing to listen to their side, but make sure to stay calm and keep it friendly.
3. Try Compromise: If you want them to listen to your views, be willing to listen to theirs and perhaps try this approach “I’ve heard what you said and I’m going to think about it, but I ask that you do the same and give thought to what I said.” This way, you’re leaving it open for potential future (friendly) discussion and maybe, you may just get them to change.
4. Let It Go: Ultimately, you have to judge how important this relationship is to you, as well as how important it is to remain above the fray. If there’s no chance of reaching this person, just let it go. Life it too precious to spend it arguing, so it may be best to just drop it.
5. Breathe: There are a lot of angry, bitter people these days and they seem incapable of changing. Letting their toxicity ruin your positivity isn’t worth it, so breathe, pray/meditate and just move one.
Pathologically stubborn people are often incapable of compromise or seeing things from any perspective other than their own. Sadly, many end up alienating people because of an obsessive need to have it their way, even when the world is telling them that they’re wrong. One has to be vigilant, because toxic, negative people always seem to want to drag people down to their level of bitterness…don’t let them. Stay strong and on course for a life of positivity.
“I do not think much of a man who is not wiser today than he was yesterday.” ―