“There seems to be some perverse human characteristic that likes to make easy things difficult.” —Warren Buffet
There does seem to be a tendency in people (me included!) to make things much more difficult than they have to be.
Do you find yourself saying any of these or something similar?
I’m overwhelmed. There’s so much to do. While there might be a lot to do, the overwhelm often comes from looking at it all at once. It gets easier when you focus on and tackle one thing at a time. If you’re in overwhelm mode right now, how can you make light what is heavy?
This is going to be really complicated. This could be anything from researching auto insurance coverage to decluttering a house to selecting a CRM solution. You can think something is easy or you can think it’s hard. Which thought do you suppose serves you better? Beyond the thought, ask yourself why it has to be complicated. Rather than making a beeline for complexity, make this your default: There is always an easy way to do something.
It’s really hard to do X. Whether X is making a drastic career change, writing a business plan, or losing 20 pounds, bracing yourself for how “hard” it’s going to be is not making it easier to accomplish. Saying or thinking something is really hard sets your expectations in one direction—and it’s a direction that often fails to ignite action and puts you on high alert for evidence you were right about the degree of difficulty.
This is so challenging. “This” could be anything from writing a weekly blog post to attending a networking event where you don’t know anyone to putting up with a difficult work situation. What do you suppose shifts when you say, This will be a walk in the park versus This is no picnic? If you repeatedly tell yourself (even if it’s only your internal voice) something is going to be tough and taxing, then it probably will be. Accept and embrace that any task or situation is only as challenging as you decide it’s going to be.
Make it easier
Here’s my question: How can you make it easier?
Don’t just gloss over that question and stay stuck in the status quo of making things harder. Instead, whatever the task or situation, ask yourself: How can I make it easier? In fact, rather than just making it easier—how can you actually make it easy?
I’ve yet to encounter a task or situation that can’t be made easier, simpler, and less complicated.
But to make this happen, you have to:
- be aware of your tendency to complicate things
- adopt a different filter for how you view the world
- brainstorm ways to simplify and streamline
- embrace new ways to make things easier
Are you in the habit of making things harder than they have to be? What can you make easier today?