Have you experienced the feeling of pushing a boulder up a hill? I always visualize it as the mental and emotional equivalent of straining, grunting and sweating, while not making much progress.
It’s not the prettiest picture, but I’d place a hefty bet that everyone reading this has been there, probably more often than you’d like. I certainly have.
And as much as I hate to admit it, I also know (deep down inside) that I can make things harder than necessary.
It’s so much easier to see when it’s happening to a friend or colleague.
You pipe up with a suggestion that, from your perspective, seems quite obvious and there’s thunderstruck silence. Followed by, “Why didn’t I think of that?”
And it’s no surprise.
We’re all so busy with the details of getting things done and problem-solving, while juggling far more balls than ever thought possible.
No wonder we don’t stop and ask the simple question, “How can I make this easy?”
Not long ago one of my clients, who had recently taken a new position within her company, was working really hard (as in giving yourself a headache kind of hard) to decide how to share some new concepts with her peers.
She saw a real opportunity to make a difference. But because this fell outside her core job, she worried her boss would see her as presumptuous, or even worse, arrogant.
“Ask him,” I suggested during one of our coaching conversations. Silence, followed by a laugh and then, this comment: “Well that would sure be easier than trying to guess what he thinks, wouldn’t it?”
Next time you find yourself struggling, stop and ask yourself, “What can I do, right this minute, to make this easier?”
Maybe it’s a change in attitude, an alternative path or asking for help.
Your answer might surprise you, but whatever it is give it a whirl. You never know, easy just might be the ticket to living your day the way you want to live your life.
“When I hear somebody sigh that life is hard, I am always tempted to ask, Compared to what?” ~Sydney J. Harris