Someone I love very much believes they are stubborn, and without realising it uses that to justify their behaviour:
“I can’t apologise, I’m too stubborn”
“I won’t go. I know it’s stubborn but that’s just the way I am”
“I don’t agree”
“I won’t change my mind, I’m too stubborn”
Being ‘stubborn’ has cost this person times of joy, caused arguments, resulted in them missing out on things and caused them to feel pain.
They honestly believe this is who they are, they identify with the label of stubborn, and because of that, think they have no other option than to believe they are stubborn and therefore act in a stubborn way.
However, their stubbornness is only caused by a thought. Thoughts such as “I’m right”, “I’m not giving in”, “I’m not going”, “It’s just the way I am”.
They are not stubborn, they are just feeling and acting stubborn due to the thoughts they have.
What if, instead, they had thoughts like:
“I’m willing to listen” or “Maybe I’m not right” or “What if I wasn’t stubborn?”
Thoughts like this will change how they feel which will change how they act. And this will change the results they see – less fights, less guilt, less pain.
They don’t realise they feel and act stubborn because of what they are thinking and if they changed their thoughts they would no longer be stubborn.
It’s available to them, they just aren’t aware of it and so stay stuck with their stubbornness and pain.
What ‘label’ are you ready to let go of?