Four Weeks

Some things take four weeks (or three, or five, or whatever – the point is that some things just take the time they take). You may not like it, because you’re impatient or lazy or whatever.

So you try very hard, counter-intuitively, to find a way to shorten the task. To make it take, somehow, less than four weeks.

Six months later, you’ve made no progress. The task is still in front of you, and it will still take four weeks. Maybe you’re so frustrated at this point that you quit. Even the best-case scenario is that you complete the task, but it took far longer than necessary out of desire for a shortcut.

This doesn’t mean that you should always blindly accept the world as it is and never seek inefficiencies! Heck no! But this is the crucial wisdom: the best way to learn how to do something better is to do it the hard way first.

Take the four weeks and do the thing. You’ll definitely find ways to improve while you’re doing it. It may be too late to enact those changes this time, but you can enact them next time with little friction. And maybe you can sell the techniques, while you’re at it.

The wisdom of a thing is inside that thing. Experience, the greatest teacher, requires that you step into the classroom – not observe it from outside, before the lesson.

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