Stubborn to a fault

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Have you ever gotten into a project, underestimated the difficulty, and found things going sideways? And then you calmly set things down and walked away, right? Or did you dig your heels in, and just keep driving forward like a stubborn mule? I feel like guys are particularly good at this...

Like last month, when we had nothing going on one afternoon (Christmas Eve too, lol), so I figured I'd scratch a few items off the todo list. I started cleaning up the garage, and went to move the riding mower back to the shed. Huh, a flat tire. Well, can't put it in the shed like that!

But it's tubeless and there was some dirt around the edge, so it wouldn't seal and hold air. Whatever, I'll just clean it up and try again. Several hours later, and I'd cleaned it a couple times, removed the tire from the rim, cleaned it more, failed to reseat it, and finally gave in. Fingers numb, chilled to the core, over something I never planned to do and won't use for another 4 months. Annoyed at myself, I pushed the mower out to the shed on 3 wheels. Hee haw.

I should've set it aside to tackle at a better (warmer) time. True, not everything can be set on the backburner. Like a project at work recently, that turned out to be more complicated than I thought. One week turned into two and some change, and what seemed straight-forward at first got complicated quick. They wanted it now, so I stubbornly pushed on, doing whatever it took to finish it.

Determination and endurance are good things if used intentionally, but wow, how quickly those traits can turn into bullheadedness. Driving forward by itself isn't necessarily smart or wise. If we're honest, the reason we keep pushing is that we're afraid we're never going to fix the current problem. We get annoyed at ourselves, upset, angry at the situation, anxious... and in that state of mind, we usually make the problem worse.

Sometimes the best thing we can do is just pull over and take a rest. Rest our minds. Rest our bodies. Kick back, have faith, and try again tomorrow.


Grant Winney

I write when I've got something to share - a personal project, a solution to a difficult problem, or just an idea. We learn by doing and sharing. We've all got something to contribute.

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