If It Was Easy...

by Tim Metzner

…Everyone would do it!

Back in my high school glory days, while running “ basketball suicides,” my coach used to always yell “if it was easy, everyone would do it!” As you might imagine, at the time, I was not too fond of this quote… but it’s certainly stuck with me.

I think about this phrase often and wanted to remind those of us who decide (continually) to take the road less traveled, of why you might be doing it. If you’re like me, you can’t help but occasionally catch yourself wondering (or maybe a friend, spouse or family member asking) why you’re doing whatever it is you’re doing.

Maybe you’re an entrepreneur struggling to make ends meet (knowing full well there are lots of great jobs out there you are well qualified for), a stay at home parent pulling your hair out with little ones (while your spouse goes to “work” every day), a volunteer spending crazy amounts of time/energy for organizations/people you’ll never receive a dime from or an underpaid educator relentlessly dealing with attitudes, no budget and red tape. Whatever it is that you’re doing, that other people simply aren’t willing to (and that you don’t HAVE to do), here are a few reminders of why you’re grinding it out every day.

  • Truly meaningful work is almost always really hard.
  • Even when you miss (mess up, fail, fall etc), big things tend to happen (i.e. you’re still making a difference).
  • Pain = Growth. Seriously, when’s the last time you finished something easy/painless and thought, wow, I grew a ton out of that experience?
  • Taking a minority position makes you different, and that’s something of which to be proud. I try to remind my boys often (even though I’m pretty sure they don’t yet understand since they’re 2 and 3) to strive to do the right thing, even when it’s the hard thing.
  • In the moment it’s hard, but when you lay your head down on the pillow tonight, you’ll feel good and will know you’re on the right path
  • You can’t change the World without short-term sacrifice
    • Want to build a sustainable company with a meaningful mission and great culture?
    • Do you want to raise kids who are well balanced, feel loved, live with purpose, have strong values and go on to do great things?
    • Hope to see an organization grow and thrive whose sole purpose is to serve the underserved?
    • Believe that children are the future and their education is the foundation of that future?

Take a breather, reflect over a cup of coffee, and journal to remind yourself of why you’re doing what you’re doing. Then grab your lunch pail and get back out there. The World needs you trudging down that road less traveled, paving the way!

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