Get Deliberate

@tdhurst posted on “It never gets easier“.  A good post that had one of those triggers: Work Smarter, Not Harder.   Oddly, @evo_terra had posted something similar the other day on twitter.  I hear this all the time at work as well.  Frankly, the phrase just pisses me off lately.

Assuming that the goal is excellence (in whatever it is you are doing relationships, work, running, etc) and that excellence is a journey not a destination.  It is important to remember that NO ONE moves down the path towards excellence without hard work. However, work alone is not enough. It has to be deliberate work or as researchers would say “deliberate practice“. That is where the smarter part comes in.

My new mantra is work harder and smarter. Get deliberate in what you want to be better at. Always easier said than done, but you can’t fail if you don’t try.

One Comment

  1. Interesting observation. Used in the right context, I think the phrase still holds water, but your context is a bit more exemplary, Mr. Neighbors. Your goals are loftier, your expectations higher.

    Which highlights a related observation. The whole point of working smarter, not harder, is to provide for increased production capacity. If, in the eyes of post-modern American society, working smarter is a means to working less, then there’s a problem.

    The bar should always be set high.

    If merely working smarter is insufficient to reach the bar, one should also work harder. Unfortunately, there seems to be a cultural shift towards lowering the bar as being somehow the smarter way of doing things.

    I like your focus on the journey, on a direction moreso than a destination. Smarter, not harder, is cruising or coasting, often downhill. Gaining altitude requires a climb which, by its very nature, is harder work than coasting.

    It’s the difference between getting by and getting ahead.

    Appreciate the food for thought in my reader this morning, sir. Thanks.

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