The Hard Easy

Before we begin, a word of caution: the idea that I am about to give you is an infectious one. It sticks irrevocably, like when someone tells you to notice your breathing and then tells you to stop, but you can’t. It could potentially change your behavior for the better.

Today, I want to talk about the Hard Easy. The Hard Easy is not a concept that I invented– like you’re doing now, I absorbed it from a contemporary, likely another NOLS instructor. But it has stuck with me and remained one of my most persistent and potent thought tools.

The concept of the Hard Easy is simple to understand: There are simple yet absolutely crucial tasks throughout our daily life that if tackled will make our lives exponentially easier down the road. Yet, as is the way of the universe, it is incredibly hard to get ourselves to do them. Doing the Hard Easy means recognizing these moments for what they are and simply doing what needs to be done, even though we don’t want to.

Mountain are where you find the hard

Mountains are an ideal place to the learn about the Hard Easy: there are many invitations to cut corners, and all bring immediate consequences. This is where I started to learn: Mt Adams, WA, 2002.

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