What’s easy and what’s hard?
When there’s no resistance, friction or gravity, things can be easy. When there’s resistance, friction or gravity, things can be hard.
- It’s easy to get into debt, getting out is hard.
- Smoking is easy, quitting is hard.
- Getting fat is easy, losing weight is hard.
- Being out of shape is easy, getting in shape is hard.
- Being glued to my phone is easy, giving my kids my 100% undivided attention is hard.
- Pulling into my garage and closing the door is easy, rolling down my window and talking with my neighbor is hard.
- Eating garbage is easy, eating healthy is hard.
- Watching Netflix or gaming for hours is easy, learning a new skill is hard.
- Being undisciplined is easy, daily execution is hard.
We can do hard things, every single one of us, I’m convinced of it. While the potential is there, a choice is required. This choice is stated perfectly by Jim Rohn: “We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret or disappointment.”
I want to help you do hard things.
Here’s what we’ll cover:
- Why do hard things?
- How to do hard things
- What’s required?
Let’s get started.
Why do hard things?
Have you ever done something hard? Why did you do it?
Why not just follow the path of least resistance? Why stress about stuff?
Here’s why I do hard things, perhaps you’ll identify with some of them:
- I want things.
- I want to feel good.
- I want to look good.
- I want to be healthy and live a long life.
- I want energy.
- I want security.
- I want certainty.
- I want peace of mind.
- I want to love and be loved.
- I’m called to it.
- I believe I must realize my full potential.
From my experience and from studying other successful high-achievers, I know the path to those things is hard work, effort and dedication.
What do you think?
How to do hard things
Desire is the common denominator of success, so that’s the starting point. You have to want it.
From there, you need to know how to do whatever it is you want to do. If you want a healthy body, you’ll need to learn about nutrition and fitness. Once you gain the knowledge, you’ll need to figure out how to execute the necessary activities like cardiovascular exercise, strength training, and nutrition. If possible, finding resources to support you on your journey can be of great benefit.
Perhaps there’s an online community to learn from, a neighborhood gym to join, or a personal trainer you can work with. The more you can be around supportive people and like-minded people who have an interest in helping, the greater your chances of success.
Once you have the knowledge/resources, you’ll put your plan together. You’ll decide which activities you’ll do, how often, and when you’ll do them. While I’m a proponent of massive action, don’t be too aggressive and set yourself up for failure.
As you’re getting started, know that you’ll experience resistance. Whenever we change our patterns and start doing hard things, we’re going to encounter resistance. Don’t be surprised by your body and brain trying to pull you back to your old, familiar ways.
Finally, it’s got to fit into your life. Don’t join a gym that’s 45 minutes away from your house. Don’t plan to learn how to play violin by practicing six hours a day. You want your success to be sustainable. Whatever hard things you’re doing, try and find that sweet spot between doing too much, and not doing enough.
Finally, know that you’re going to slip up and have relapses. When this happens, don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. Start again the next day.
Ownership. Personal responsibility, Grit. Determination. These are all required to do hard things. If you have them, but you just need to remember where you put them, great! If you’re not sure, I’m here to tell you that you’ve got everything you need.
Self-discipline is an amazing thing, but it comes after structure.
Set yourself up for success by putting as much structure in place as you can. Make your success idiot-proof. If you intend to run in the morning, put your clothes and shoes on the floor next to your bed the night before. Have everything ready to go.
When the alarm goes off, get out of bed. Don’t negotiate with yourself. Don’t hit snooze.
And remind yourself why you’re doing the hard thing(s). Keep your reason(s) top of mind.
Hard things are hard to do.
You’re someone who can do them.
As you do what it takes, you get better, and the things that used to be hard get easier. Thanks for taking the time to read this, I wish you luck with whatever you’re working on.
In service of helping you get clear on your motivations, I encourage you to take our Goals Course– you can access it for free.
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