The Path of Least Resistance

Author: Larry Hochman, The Guidance Guy

Most of us have heard the old expression, "Work Smart, Not Hard." Well, I'd like to take it one step further: find the path of least resistance. If you think about some of the most successful ventures in American history, they were accomplished because of two basic reasons. 1. Someone had a burning desire to do something. It became important to them. 2. He or she was short on resources to put toward their goal, and/or wanted to find the easiest way to get there. If you look at your own life and analyze the times where you've accomplished the most, you will probably find the same set of circumstances. Money was tight, or the family wasn't supportive, or you just wanted something SO bad it became the center of your universe. It's the perfect set of conditions for what I call "constructive laziness." This is where genius is born. Of course, this line of thinking is directly opposite what most of us have been taught. "You have to work hard for what you want. You can't get something for nothing. Idle hands are the devil's work." There are some basic truths here. There is cost associated with any progress. Few people work harder than the ones pulling the strings behind the scenes. But for most of them, their hard work was done BEFORE any actual labor took place. It was done between the ears. And often it was paid for in anxiety, patient research, late night brain storms, and teaching others the fruits of their mental labor. For these people, the real work was creating the infrastructure for success. When someone wants something badly enough, they are willing to think beyond their usual mental limits and come up with solutions that some call creative, some call lazy, and some call insane. The beauty of this is that it's an easy way to measure your true desire for change. You can tell yourself you want something, but if you're not THINKING differently about how to get it, the truth is it's just not that important to you. And that's OK, because something else is. Once you decide on your true desire, you will find the way to get it as quickly and efficiently as possible (hopefully within the boundaries of some moral and ethical guidelines). You will not intentionally put road blocks in front of you to make your path more difficult. People who want something badly enough take the path of least resistance. This expression has gotten a bad rap because it has been associated with wishy-washy behavior, laziness and lack of courage. I think the exact opposite is true. People who are following a deep desire for something will put on the blinders. They have the courage to follow their instincts and see the world through a different lens than they did before, and different from the perspective of those around them. Working and thinking the same way and hoping for a different result leads to frustration and failure. Want an example? Look at cats...probably the best animal I can think of at following its desires. Their needs are pretty basic, but they seem to occupy all of their effort. They don't make things any harder on themselves than they have to, but take the shortest route possible to maximum results. Notice also that they seem to have a way of landing on their feet after adversity (literally). Here are some suggestions I have for taking the path of least resistance: 1. Find out exactly what you want. This is usually done by going someplace without distractions and listening to the quiet voice inside you. It will tell you what you want. Don't be fooled by the expectations others have for you; you will never work at these as efficiently as the desires you have for yourself. 2. Be ready to look for the easiest and shortest way of getting to it. It may be a lot easier than you think, although it may also mean sacrificing some things that weren't as important to you as you think they are. 3. Copy other people who already have what you want. Copying is not cheating. It is smart and efficient labor. If you copy what someone else is doing often enough, it becomes your own. 4. Be ready for "the cascade". Once you start making significant changes in one area of your life, other things - seemingly unrelated - will change along with them. Use the same path of least resistance thinking to work on these areas that you are on your primary change. Seeking the path of least resistance is responsible for some of the best things to happen to all of us. Once you know your true desires and are willing to find your way there, the world will open up in new and wonderful ways. Keywords: life, self-help, personal development, home business About the Author Larry Hochman, The Guidance Guy, Bristol, Connecticut 06010 Larry Hochman is "The Guidance Guy" and the author of NINE SECRETS TO COLLEGE AND CAREER SUCCESS. He is an amateur juggler who uses this skill to teach people confidence and healthy risk taking. Learn more about the Home Business that Larry has chosen to secure his family's future at ...

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