From the Ask Tom mailbag –
In your last post, Easy Now, Hard Later, you talked about the addiction curve, the procrastination curve and the busy curve. More, in depth, please.
The addiction curve, easy now, hard later works in several scenarios. It’s a simple principle to understand addiction recovery, but applicable to any situation where you need to kick the habit, replace a habit, or kick-start a new habit. The first step is hard, but what is hard now, is easy (easier) later.
The procrastination curve is identical. It’s easy now, to put off something difficult. Wimpy used to say he would gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today. Easy now is the first step to procrastination.
But the busy curve is harder to get our arms around. Easy to spend our time responding to email (looking busy), checking off random items on the to-do list (thinking we are busy), when we are stalling on the most important projects that are hard now. Projects that require thinking, sharpening a skill, acquiring rare materials, enlisting the aid of others. A project is any task with more than one step. Get started. Next Tuesday, the hamburger will be gone, but the bill comes due.