Some things are hard to do. That doesn’t mean that they cannot be accomplished. But they may involve some work; a little elbow grease. Some practice, determination and dedication. But it seems in our society, we want it all, we want to be experts but we don’t want to break a sweat. Like the people in the Staple’s commercial, we want the easy button.
Let me give some examples. Last week at work I provided some training to staff members on how to use our content management system, or CMS. The CMS is a tool that lets “non-techy” staff members publish information on our Intranet site without having to learn HTML code. (Not unlike using WordPress to publish this blog).
Some staff members have lamented, “Why can’t it be easy”. Well, in fact, it’s really not that hard. Once you spend a little time learning it, and then using it, it becomes easy. But that’s they key: interest in learning, and repeatedly practicing what you’ve learned. But they don’t want to take the time, they want the short-cut. It’s funny because the CMS is already a short-cut. If they think the CMS is hard to use, they should try typing HTML code into Notepad like we did in the 90’s. In comparison, pasting text into a template and clicking “publish” is relatively easy. But most of these folks don’t have that frame of reference. They just want it to be instantly easy.
Another example. Last year I ran my first 5K race. Before getting started with my training, I could barely run for one minute at a time. Running was hard for me. I always assumed I couldn’t be a runner. Well that’s probably because I never gave it a chance. I had to repeatedly practice running. It had always seemed so overwhelming. But then my sister told me about the “Couch to 5K” plan which breaks it down into simple steps – walk, run, walk. Walk, run, walk. Repeat a few times a week until you are running more than you are walking. After a few weeks, I was able to run for ten minutes. After a few more weeks, I could run for 20 minutes. No easy button. I had to break a sweat, literally!
So keep this all in mind next time you are trying to learn something new – practice, practice, practice, consistently and repeatedly. And what was once hard will become easy. No button needed.