- June 8, 2020
There’s a saying I love “Easy choices, hard life. Hard choices, easy life.” It sums up everything you need to know about self-improvement in one sentence.
You get some leeway to start. If you grew up with disadvantageous circumstances, didn’t have the right breaks early on, and found yourself behind in the “race of life” through no fault of your own. Well, your starting position is…no fault of your own.
Regardless of where you start, though, ultimately, your life as it is right now is mostly a result of the decisions you’ve made day in and day out. And the thing that messes you up most? Small concessions.
Most people aren’t total screw-ups. You’re not a total screw-up. So why is it that most people end up with drastically different lives than the one they want? Small concessions. See, you wouldn’t be willing to give up your life purpose, meaning, and ultimate joy on this earth all at once — it has to be taken away in small chunks for you not to notice.
Each individual concession is insignificant, but look up a few years later, and the trap you find yourself in was built brick by brick with each little tiny concession:
- Skip the gym once, cool, but skip the gym or doing the workout of your choice hundreds or thousands of times in a row and you’re in trouble. Think about this, some people have avoided going to the gym thousands of times.
- Keep telling yourself day after day, week after week, month after month, and year after year that you’re finally going to start the project or business, but fail to do so. It’ll get harder to start each time you think about it because you’ve been piling up these subconscious signals telling yourself you’re not the type of person who takes action.
- Stay in that relationship you know you’re not meant to be in just a little bit longer. Continue to waste time you could’ve spent finding an ideal partner. Chris Rock has a joke along the lines of “50 per cent of people get divorced, but what about the cowards who hate their marriage but don’t leave?”
Fast forward and you have the life of the average person in society, beaten and worn down by these tiny concessions — working a job they hate or tolerate, poor mental and physical health, stuck in a relationship they probably don’t want to be in, etc. The weight of all of those concessions piled-up is what makes people feel “stuck.”
And the reason they stay stuck? Getting out of it requires an equal amount of positive habits and disciplines. If you skipped the gym 1,000 times you’ll have to go at least a few hundred times to get in amazing shape. Building a project or business can take years of combined daily action. Starting from zero when you realize your relationships are subpar may mean having to start all over. All hard choices that will leave to an easy life in the long-run.
The good news? You probably aren’t afflicted with every single ill of the ‘easy choice’ lifestyle. Parts of your life are great, but other parts of your life need some added habits and disciplines so you can improve them long-term.
So how do you do it?
Like I’ve said many times before…one day you’re going to have to decide that you’re no longer going to be a wimp and just do something about your life. Until you put your proverbial foot down, nothing will change.
What ‘hard choice’ are you willing to make this week so you can live an ‘easy life’ down the road?