Do What Is 'Right' Not What Is 'Easy' (Reading Time: 3 minutes)
This can be challenging! I recall the first time I heard this sentiment, I was 26 years old and thought I had the world figured out. I was in a meeting and a fellow was speaking and said, ‘just because something is easy, doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do. And, sometimes the harder something is, the more right it is.’ I was struck by this simple statement. It made so much sense but did not necessarily lend itself to making the right choice. Why not? A recent conversation with my younger brother gave me another layer of insight when he introduced to me the idea of ‘simple vs easy.’ It has changed how I look at so many things in my life and my practice. The basic tenet is: we can usually identify what the easy steps are to achieve our desires, however, that does not mean that they are easy to execute. I want to lose weight? Stop eating cheeseburgers and go to the gym more regularly...so simple! The trick though is to make it ‘easier’ to execute. It is not easy to avoid cheeseburgers when I skip lunch, when I drive past a drive thru, when I deprive myself of eating fulfilling foods, when I’m feeling emotional, or any other number of reasons. So I need to identify what steps would make it easier. Pack my gym bag the night before, ensure I have a nutritious lunch, take a different route home that avoids a drive thru, etc.
I am often reminded of this when I need to have a difficult or challenging conversation with a loved one. The 'simple' step is to just say what I need to say, but that does not make it 'easy'. There can be risk to those conversations in how the person may react, the fallout, the cost of bringing it up; which all make it less 'easy'. So, I identify ways to make it easier. I approach the person in a collaborative way and own my part in the conversation and the role I play in how the dynamic has been created. By being humble and inviting, it makes it easier for me to heard, understood, and ultimately validated. By arriving to conflict in this way, who is removed and we are working toward a unified outcome vs someone needing to ‘win’ or be right. So simple right? But not necessarily easy. Think about things you would like to do differently in your own life and think about what are the simple steps to execute and what would help them feel easier? How does this align with you and your goals? C
hallenging conversations in relationships? Setting boundaries with others?
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