I’m default wary of Tim Ferris and TED talks, yet here I am linking to this one. It’s got a great little couplet at the end1 of it:

Hard Choices, Easy Life / Easy Choices, Hard Life - Jerzy Gregorek

I love it for what is says about how you might be prioritizing work, or calling out the habit of trying to make everyone happy. There’s certainly some work for the person to decide which decisions to focus on! But it’s a catchy little thing to have in your pocket when work feels needlessly hard.

I was talking about this with a manager peer, and she brought up a saying that she keeps in mind, that closes the loop:

Do the right hard things 2

It frames that initial phrase to make sure that the things that are hard decisions should lead to meaningful outcomes.

If the hard thing is the thing thing, doing it well will make things easier in the future. Which enables growth through new and different opportunities. Which is what makes work fun.

Here’s to making the right hard choices

  1. The rest of the talk on stoicism isn’t particularly my thing ↩︎

  2. My brain sings this to the tune of Frozen 2’s “Do the next right thing…” ↩︎