Every February I do a shortbread cookie fundraiser for a food bank I volunteer with. It used to be huge: 1000+ cookies in a weekend with non stop baking from Friday sundown till sun up Sunday. As time has passed it has dwindled to a much smaller affair (the result of less free time and a much smaller kitchen). I had this moment of crisis as I was baking this February. Standing in the kitchen over the third batter of cookies, I realized that I could just donate the same amount I was raising. It wasn’t much more than I was investing in the ingredients. I could save myself several hours of mixing, baking and packaging. Was it worth the time?
It made me think of education. How many times was I being wooed by what is easier: the go to lesson that I have down pat, the app that is quicker not necessarily better at communicating my message, the easy answer in a conversation instead of the challenging question. As much as the cookie fundraiser takes more time and the donation would be easier, in the end the time spent allows me to build awareness and hopefully a smile on friend’s faces. It was worth the investment.
I thought that was the lesson and then I stumbled on a post by Seth Godin on Saying No. Sometimes I can get caught in this place where I want to do everything better. Everything seems to be just as important and in an effort to do them all well, they all fall slightly short. Accepting that better over easier also means saying no to some things. Everything can’t be better. Investing the time means letting go of other areas. But how do you choose?
Something I continue to work on.
How do you choose between Better, Easier and No?
Would love to hear your thoughts!