As someone who has been addicted to doing things the hard way, this concept is a mind-bender. I certainly have believed, albeit unconsciously, that harder was better, that struggle proved my worth, and that anything worth doing was worth fighting for. In fact, if something didn’t take a battle, then I probably didn’t deem it important, or at least not an accomplishment to be proud of. But while it may have taken this long, I’m learning that there’s a different way.
It’s a different way and in some ways an easier way, because it’s about having things be easy. But at times it feels like a harder way, because it pushes against at least a few decades of programming.
It’s definitely a more conscious way. Maybe that’s what makes it harder. Better, but harder nonetheless. Rather than running on autopilot, I have to deliberately stop and consider the choices I’m making and the paths I’m choosing. “Am I taking the hard way?” I need to continuously question. “There might be an easier path I can take,” I need to remind myself.
That’s really the question – is there an easier way? Because the old me never considered that there might be an easier way and, at times, the new me doesn’t know how to contemplate it, much less look for it. I have to define “it can be easy” for myself, to help myself find it.
I think an easier way is maybe one that takes less time, or less effort. It might be one that is more fun, that goes at a slower pace, or at a quicker pace in order to get a job done and move on. An easier way might be one that is more mindful – a way that helps me stop and smell the roses along my path. It might cause me to laugh more, or at least to look for reasons to laugh and smile more.
It might challenge me to have more fun with whatever I’m doing. It might pressure me to start my to-do list later, end my to-do list earlier, and take breaks throughout. It might compel me to spend more time with people I love and tasks I enjoy so much that they don’t seem like tasks. It might push me to make sure my jaw isn’t clenched and my shoulders aren’t up to my ears. It might propel me to stop and take a breath more often and more intentionally, to be more mindful and aware of what’s around me, to be more appreciative of what is. And it might force me to consciously check in with myself as I go along. To make sure that what I’m doing is what I truly want and need to be doing, and that I’m both doing my best and doing my best to be easy with it.
Sounds pretty good, huh? If this is what it might look like, I think I can learn that things can be easy, or at least easier. I think I can learn to choose easy. At least more often than I have been.
Oh yeah, and I can be easy about it when I don’t.
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