The Problem with Easy
We all look for easy. We want easy and fast, comfortable and painless. But is this always better? I wonder.
I remember when I wrote letters to my friends. I loved writing those letters! It was a special ritual. The paper, the pen, the time I spend writing. It was an act of love, a creative expression. It brought me closer to my friends. I preserve some of those old letters.
Now I’ve got email. In a blink of an eye I can communicate with my friends overseas… heck with any friend.
Do I communicate more, better?
I’ve actually stopped writing letters.
I send notes. There is often an email dialogue going with my best friends. But it is rarely a proper letter.
So yesterday I decided to go back to letter writing.
If email makes it faster to send a letter, without the need of spending on stamps, then I will make use of this easier, faster, cheaper mean… to actually write letters. I am on a mission to write a letter a week.
Think about it. How many things we have now that make our life easier, yet we have stopped doing those very things, or do them as a matter-of-fact, a habit, superficially… and we have lost the pleasure and art that used to come with doing them when they were harder to do.
- Now that we have cell phones, we text people and avoid talking on the phone to stay in touch.
- Now that we have email, we no longer cultivate the art of letter writing.
- Now that we have computers, we write less and browse more, jumping from social media to google.
- Now that we have online events, we end up not going to them and seeing/hearing the replay.
And the list goes on.
Easy Vs Special
I wonder if we disregard things once they are easy. I wonder if we as human beings don’t really want “easy”– if we long for “special” instead, even if –or precisely because– it takes more time. Maybe what we need is more caring and less ease, more artfulness and less fast, more beauty and less cheap.
It like buildings these days. They are so ugly! Match boxes with metal and mirrors.
I look at the old buildings and they show care for details, beautiful ornaments, warm materials… beauty.
Is it better to do less and care more? Definitely!
Is it better to do something artful, beautiful, where we put our spirit, our attention and it is a labor of love? I think so.
And that may require a shift from fast and easy to a focus on beauty, pleasure and care.
Which makes me thing that we’ve confused comfort with pleasure, and suddenly I realize that they are completely different things. You may have comfort and not pleasure. Hum!
Does this mean that we should return to the past? Disregard modern conveniences? I don’t think so. I’m romantic, but not THAT romantic! LOL
My recommendation is to look at what is easy to do now… and then remember when it used to be an art, a special time or activity… and renew the pleasure of it with the new ease of it.
What do you think?