The Power of Defiance: How Stubbornness and Initiative Can Lead to Success

Esteban Tala

Hatched by Esteban Tala

Dec 17, 2023

3 min read


The Power of Defiance: How Stubbornness and Initiative Can Lead to Success


In a society that often values compliance and conformity, it may come as a surprise that stubbornness and defiance can actually be linked to later career success. Recent studies have shed light on this intriguing connection, suggesting that individuals who exhibit strong-willed behavior from a young age are more likely to achieve success in their professional lives. This article explores the reasons behind this correlation and offers actionable advice for those looking to harness the power of defiance to create their own opportunities.

The Link Between Defiance and Success:

According to a study highlighted in an article by Matter, stubborn children tend to be more competitive in the classroom, leading to better academic performance. This competitive spirit carries over into their adult lives, as they become more assertive and demanding in salary negotiations. These individuals are not afraid to fight for their own financial interests, even if it means potentially alienating friends and colleagues. However, it is important to note that the study also raises concerns about the potential for unethical behavior among these rule breakers in pursuit of higher salaries.

Creating Your Own Opportunities:

Building on the notion that waiting for someone else to give you a chance may not always be fruitful, it is crucial to take initiative and create opportunities for yourself. The article from Matter titled "Nobody will give me a chance" emphasizes the need to go beyond traditional job application methods. Instead of relying solely on resumes, cover letters, and online applications, it suggests showcasing your skills and value to potential employers in a more proactive way.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Showcase Your Skills: If you want to stand out from the competition, draft up a compelling deck or presentation that highlights your abilities and achievements. Record a video of your pitch and send it to key decision-makers at the company you're interested in. This personalized approach demonstrates your initiative and sets you apart from other candidates.
  • 2. Follow Up and Be Persistent: Don't be discouraged if you don't receive an immediate response. Follow up with the individuals you reached out to, expressing your continued interest and enthusiasm. Persistence can be a key factor in getting noticed and securing opportunities that may not have otherwise been available.
  • 3. Embrace Unconventional Strategies: To truly differentiate yourself, it is essential to think outside the box and go beyond the standard job application techniques. Explore avenues such as networking events, industry conferences, or even starting your own project or business. By taking unconventional paths, you increase your chances of gaining the attention and recognition needed to create your own opportunities.


While the correlation between stubbornness and success may seem counterintuitive, studies suggest that there is indeed a link between these traits. By leveraging defiance and taking initiative, individuals can set themselves apart and increase their chances of achieving career success. The key lies in recognizing the value of one's strengths and using them strategically to create opportunities. So, if you find yourself feeling overlooked or waiting for someone to give you a chance, remember that sometimes, you have to be the one to create those chances for yourself. Embrace your stubbornness, take action, and pave your own path to success.

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