Quit Being A Fucking Wuss and Stop Doing Things You Hate

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A little while ago I wrote a short essay to myself to stop doing things I hate. Then a few days ago a friend gave me a copy of his almost-ready-to-send-to-the-publisher book (print book) and part of it was on this topic. It spurred me to revisit my words and turn it into an article.

How much of your routine do you absolutely hate with every fiber of your being?

My least favorite part of writing here (actually, the only thing I dislike) has always been finding images for my articles.

I hate the whole process.

I hate thinking about the photo. I hate searching for the photo. I hate uploading the photo. I hate linking to the photo.

How To Lose $19,500

Dealing with photos for this blog is a seemingly simple action, but it would sometimes take me upwards of 30 minutes to complete the process. 30 minutes x 3 times per week x 52 times per year = 78 hours. It’s a completely inane task that costs me $19,500 in lost productivity (based on $250/hour) every year. I’d have to be clinically insane to pay $19,500 for something I hate.

Interesting things come to light when you put an actual dollar amount on your time, don’t you think?

Recently I was reading ZenHabits (Leo removed photos last year) and I thought to myself, “What would happen if I stopped using photos in my articles? So what if almost everybody else uses them on their blogs? Is it necessary?”

Do you know what has happened since I stopped wasting time on photos?

Did you guess nothing?

You’re right.

Nothing has changed, things are going well.

Even more than that, what I definitely feel by not posting images is relief. A sense of happiness when I’ve finished an article instead of a feeling of “ugh, now I gotta find a photo for this.”

Sometimes I have a strong vision for a photo that I’d like to include in the article. In those instances I can usually find that photo in a couple minutes and I’m happy to do it. But you’ll see that, for the most part, there haven’t been images on this blog for a while.

Why is it that we let ourselves get stuck in these situations that don’t have a positive impact in our lives?

What are you currently doing that you hate doing?

Or where are you following the crowd just because you “have” to even though you don’t actually want to? Do you really have to continue doing it or have you just brainwashed yourself into believing that?

  • Do you really have to answer every comment / tweet / e-mail / facebook message?
  • Do you really have to “connect” with people on Twitter?
  • Do you really have to do your laundry?
  • Do you really have to drink to have a good time even though you feel like shit afterwards?
  • Do you really have to choose the “safe” (although not safe at all) path of University > 40 year job > 20 year retirement > death?
  • Do you really have to wash your hair with shampoo?
  • Do you really have to pop pills and waste money to deal with allergies?
  • Do you really have to post to your blog on a set schedule?
  • Do you really have to write long articles even though you enjoy concise thoughts?
  • Do you really have to make breakfast every morning?

You never have to do anything you hate doing.

You can always find somebody else who will be happy to do whatever you hate. Or you might find that you don’t need anybody to do what you hate. It might not need to be done at all!

Does this mean you’ll be perfect and never do anything you hate? No way. I do a lot of things I hate.

Sometimes it’s because I can’t find someone to do it in the time frame it needs to be done. Sometimes it’s because it’s 4am and I want it done right away. Sometimes it’s because I want to get a better grasp of how something works and I know I’ll only have to hate it one time.

But now when I have a feeling of “I hate this” I mindfully step back and ask myself: “Does this need to be done? If yes, who can do it for me or how can I love it?”

What part of your routine do you hate doing? Are you going to quit being a fucking wuss and stop that?



54 COMMENTS

  1. Karol,
    I love it. I write to help people understand that there is no reason to be stuck in a shitty job you hate. Life is way too short to waste your life doing something you hate.

    Speaking of hate, I HATE my job. Even more than you hate finding photos, I’m sure! Do I have to do it? Of course not. Someone would gladly take my job in an office smaller than the interior of my Honda.

    It’s all a choice.

    By the way, I would be glad to accept a position as your official photo finder for the small salary of $19,499 :)

    • Hey Steve, a position may or may not be opening up soon. Like, maybe Saturday. (wink wink)

      I’m confused, you write to tell people they don’t need to be stuck in their shitty jobs, but you’re stuck in a shitty job?

      • “I’m confused, you write to tell people they don’t need to be stuck in their shitty jobs, but you’re stuck in a shitty job?”

        I noticed that too. Odd, blatantly contradictory comment.

      • I write to help people understand that there is so much more to life than working in a job they hate. I speak from experience becasue I am in a job I hate.

        I have a plan to quit, but due to a number of external issues, it’s going to take a bit of time. My plan is to share how I escape from my job and the steps I take.

        One of the biggest problems I see is that people just settle for whatever job they can get. They will take any job, good or bad, because it pays the bills, it’s a bad economy, or , and I know there is a better way to live.

        I’m a huge believer in living your passion. I feel life should be about happiness, passion, and loving your life. Most of us don’t do that. We grind out a shitty job for 30 or 40 years, retire, and die. It’s complete bullshit.

        Just because I’m trapped in my job for the time being doesn’t mean I can’t inspire those who need it.

        I don’t position myself as the expert or try to make money selling something I have no experience with. I am sharing my passion for NOT working a miserable job.

        • I kind of get that Steve. It took me a while to extricate myself as well. Of course… now I’m free. :) Best wishes. You can do it.

        • Steve, I understand that you may have dependents or issue to leaving your job but I found myself in the same position. Sometimes the longer you stay- you 1. miss opportunities that are waiting for you 2. You become worse at your job because the lack of love shows! even if we dont’ think so, it affects interactions and our level of engagement. 3. It on some level affects your health. Elephant Journal http://bit.ly/hHH95j, pub my first piece about my saga leaving my job as an academic. It’s pretty funny and filled with mishaps but I’m soooo happy to be out of the job.

  2. Heh. Photos can be a bitch. :) I recently started experimenting with using only 4 design elements and creating my images using them. It’s cut back “photo searching” time or worse, “photo taking time” tremendously. An experiment I’ve been enjoying.

    Good list, excellent article. While I will keep (forever and ever) doing laundry and washing my hair, I am all about creating the ideal reality for myself, and I think that’s the big point you’re getting at here. Dropping the stuff that makes you cringe inside and doing the stuff that makes your heart soar. Booyah.

    • I didn’t say laundry is unnecessary, I just said you don’t need to do it yourself if you don’t like it. But not washing hair = fantastic. I’m going on almost 2 years now. :)

      Thanks Tanja!

      • I figured you meant having someone else do laundry for you. :)

        I’ve done the no shampoo thing. I think it works really well for people with certain hair types. I end up looking like a serious mess myself. Dry hair types evidently can thrive on it. My compromise is I don’t use conditioner!

  3. Karol, I love how you get RIGHT to the point. ;) Funny how some people hate certain things and others love them…photos for my blog posts are one of my favorite things!

    I absolutely HATE mowing the lawn. For years I suffered thru it because I thought I couldn’t justify the cost of a lawn care service, but last year I finally did it and it was worth every single penny. My lawn looked a thousand times better and I enjoyed my summer a whole lot more.

    This morning, I realized how much I hate checking my e-mail fifty times a day because I’m afraid I’ll miss something…so I’ve resolved to check it once in the morning and call it good. Whatever’s in there that I need to take care of, will be there when I get to it. I feel better already! :)

    • Awesome! I know I’m probably a select few who hates searching for photos, but that’s OK. :)

      Congrats on hiring out your lawn mowing and cutting back on e-mail.

  4. Haha! Karol….when I’m not being woowoo lovey, you speak the EXACT questions I use to tell people to cut the shit.

    I’m SO glad I was open to your influence waaaay back (and only yesterday, time is so weird for me),
    I am truly happy in this Brave New World and it’s partly Your fault, Mister. :)

    Thank you, for dancing to your own music.

  5. Karol, it is easy to get into doing things you hate because experts (bloggers, parents, whatever) said we should, but we forget that we need only answer to ourselves. If no one is coming to throw me in prison, and it doesn’t jeopardize my relationship with my family, then to hell with it!
    On a similar note, the only pictures that go on my site are ones I take or make. Regardless of what the experts say, adding other people’s work feels wrong to me.
    Thanks for the excellence!

    • “If no one is coming to throw me in prison, and it doesn’t jeopardize my relationship with my family, then to hell with it!” This is great. Thanks Jeremy.

    • I only use my own pics in my blog posts too! I upload them all to flickr and it has a great function where it lets you choose the size and gives you the html, which comes out looking perfect on my site :)

      I actually find it very difficult to make myself do things I hate doing, which I suppose I should be rather glad of! It is a bit of a pain when it comes to listing things on eBay though – I hate doing it, but I want the money!

      Karen

  6. This post is dead on. I am relatively good at not doing things I hate…until the guilt gets me. I don’t mind doing laundry, but I hate putting it away. So it piles up, clean, until I can’t take my feelings of oh-my-god-why-am-I-so-lazy any longer.

    I think an even bigger challenge can be breaking from activities that are neither hated nor fulfilling. That’s where spending time on Twitter or watching TV tend to fall for me. They’re numbing. I don’t feel refreshed afterwards, but once I start, it’s nearly impossible to stop. I’ve got the TV thing under control but need to wrest myself out of the technology loop.

  7. Karol,
    When I left the corp world 10 years ago I stopped doing work I hate. Since then it’s been an ongoing process. I love my work in general, and then there are the niggly little things that sneak up, most of them already delegated or dumped for good!

    In no particular order there are the things that came to mind: filing, cleaning my office and returning phone calls. It’s time for these energy sucks to go!

  8. As a photographer with a photography blog I would just like to say that I am in 100% agreement with you on this. Only use images if they are as important to the post as the words.

    On your larger point the US is unique in that its population is, by and large, happy to regard the seller as an unbiased source. This blows my mind and leads to all sorts of bad choices.

    As for the breakfast thing – I would have agreed with you up until about age 48. After that lack of breakfast did bad things to my concentration levels.

    • Thanks for your input Steve.

      Breakfast: I have probably missed eating 3 breakfasts in my entire lifetime. I love it and it’s important. Double whammy.

  9. I sold a profitable business because I hated it. I didn’t even have to work much, but it weighed on my mind all the time.
    I was so much happier after it was no longer mine.

      • This…..this line of thinking is where I need to be. There are a number of things that I’m good at. Sadly I hate every single one of them. But I feel guilty for not doing them, because I’m good at them, and I know lots of other people would kill to have the skills I have, yet I don’t want to use them because they bring me no joy.

        At some point, I *have* to realize that just because I’m good at something doesn’t mean that I’m obligated to do it!

        Of course, I’m not sure that doing things I love, but suck at, makes a whole lot of sense either. :)

        • If you love it but you suck at it right now, you will eventually be awesome at it. It’s impossible not to get good at something you love because if you love something you do it and do it and do it. (Getting good at something you love doesn’t mean you’ll get paid doing it, of course. But that doesn’t matter. I don’t get paid to play guitar, but I still do it.)

  10. Thanks for sharing this.
    It seems like many people (myself included) fall under the misapprehension that doing things we hate on a regular basis gives us a kind of…masochistic valor. I’d agree with you ~ it takes greater strength of character to stop doing the things we hate doing (and to find creative ways around them)!

    • Caroline,

      I appreciate your comment.
      People feel it is noble to do work we hate.

      Truth be told, this may have been closer to the truth during the industrial age… during the World Wars… during the depression era…

      But in the age of the Internet, with one having global visibility, if you look for examples of people transitioning from YOUR type of work, into something fulfilling, you’ll find it.

      Note that too many folks still want a “sure thing” before leaping.
      They don’t want to let go of the “bird in the hand”, before chasing the “two in the bush”.

      The desire for certainty and “security” might be what keeps most people in a work relationship they hate.

  11. Hi, Karol!

    Couldn’t agree more! I’ve been having this conversation with a friend of mine revolving around things like having to schedule doctor’s visits and doing laundry. I keep suggesting that he just outsource that sort of work – find a few friends with tasks they hate and collectively hire an assistant! I don’t think he’s taking me seriously.

    I’m surprised at how many people continue to believe that they absolutely have to do things they hate. I once had a job that required 84 hours a week (salaried, no OT). I hated it, so I quit! The world’s still spinning, last time I checked.

  12. What’s up, Karol?
    LOLOL! I’d love to have your post headline analyzed on CopyBlogger and ProBlogger. I stopped dead in my tracks when I saw it… and had to click!

    I heard someone say yesterday (Johnny Gibaud on Chris Ducker’s Vritual Business Lifestyle podcast): Common sense isn’t commonly applied.

    To consider another way: Habit > Common sense or Logic

    Having someone else call us out on our illogical and nonsensical behavior, is the first step to realizing that we are living that inane equation above.
    The second step deciding that now is the time to change that inane equation.

    The third step is finding a way to replace the bad habit with a good one.
    We all have willpower and discipline – we just use it more often than we ought to, for our bad habits. :P

    Thanks for the kick in the pants!

    (Oh – the thing I hate, that I need to stop doing? Procrastinating on the non-creative aspects of my business, that still need to be done. I’ve started outsourcing, but not nearly enough.) :)

    • I would love them to analyze the headline as well. You want to send it over to Brian or Darren for me? ;)

      Good point regarding habits and common sense. I wish more people would call me out when I’m being illogical and nonsensical! :)

      Thanks for accepting the kick in the pants.

  13. I like this post because I am a big fan of testing the limits of what is unnecessary. I stopped getting haircuts ten years ago and don’t miss it at all. Having long hair is cool! And regarding your shampoo comment – I think many scents and lotions and disinfectants are not as necessary as advertising leads us to believe. People should test for themselves what is needed in their own lives without relying on assumptions based on mass marketing to make decisions.

  14. Hey Karol. My first comment on your site although I’ve been reading it for the past couple months. So much awesomeness going on here, I feel it’s ok that it cuts into my working time. I’m definitely about to read your shampoo and allergy posts, I hope they help me! ;)

    When it comes to finding an image, that’s one of my favorite parts. I spend about five minutes looking on a free stock photo site. If I can’t find anything there, I just snap a random pic with my phone that somewhat relates.

    Lastly, I was at a job that I dreaded going to almost every single day. I would actually try to avoid any conversation with my boss to limit the awkwardness and the work I hated to do. One Monday, I woke up for that job and just stared at the ceiling for a bit. Then I said, no way, I’m done. 2 weeks from that day was my last day.

    Now I get paid less but enjoy what I do more and work with some awesome and creative people. My goal is to someday also quit this job when it’s no longer fun, be successful on my own, and teach everyone I meet how to do the same.

    Again, you are very inspiring Karol. Keep motivating the shit out of the world you rock star!

    • Thanks for reading and commenting Randy. You’re welcome for cutting into your work time. :)

      I did the “I won’t spent more than 5 minutes finding images” thing for a while. It was even more frustrating because then I’d be rushing.

      Congrats on quitting the job you hated.

  15. Ow man, this post is exactly what I need to read. Somethings I HATE do, but for this time, I’m doing. But soon Ill outsource almost everything.

    And talking ’bout photos, why dont you take by yourself instead ? Write a article, take a picture of something around you, upload and done, never need to search [thing that I hate sometimes too].

    OK?

    See ya

  16. Karol…it takes a while to learn what needs to be done and what can be eliminated. Just like stuff, we don’t know what is necessary because we are trained to follow the status quo.

    Fortunately, that has never been the case for me. I’m a firm believer in soaring with your strengths and leaving the rest behind…if I miss a few boats on the way, it’s likely they were ones I didn’t want to get on.

    I felt the same way about the photo process and decided to create a definition box using GIMP. The whole process takes me 3-5 minutes per article and adds a valuable visual recap for each article.

    It’s amazing how simple solutions can be found when we stop worrying about stigma, peer pressure and judgment.

  17. […] Quit Being A Fucking Wuss and Stop Doing Things You Hate “• Do you really have to answer every comment / tweet / e-mail / facebook message? • Do you really have to ‘connect’ with people on Twitter? • Do you really have to do your laundry?” ~Karol Gajda at Ridiculously Extraordinary […]

  18. wow… tell us how you really feel… LOL!

    I hate finding pics too. I’m gonna test and see if it actually makes a difference on my blog. I mainly insert them so when I post the posts (yuck) on Facebook, there’s a pic there to grab attention. I also hate blog maintenance, looking at statistics, etc. I’m not that crazy about Twitter either and I may let that go (have been thinking about it for a while anyway).

    For me, the time value of these tasks is higher than the monetary value. Stopping myself midstream to find and edit pics, update the HTML, preview, all that stuff… I imagine how much more I could get accomplished, and enjoy it while I’m doing it, if I just moved on to something else I enjoy instead.

    Something to think about…

    • Editing for readability is important. That’s core content. A photo doesn’t usually add anything of value to the content.

      As for maintenance and stats. All of that can be either outsourced or time-boxed.

  19. Surely the whole point of doing things we don’t like to do is because when we have done it we then enjoy the things we like to do more!

  20. Karol, don’t hold back – write a headline that tells us how you “really” feel, ha ha, LOL.

    Thanks for writing this really powerful question to use in day to day life: “Do I really have to ______?” As you’ve shown, the answer is often, “No, I don’t have to so I’m not gonna.” That would be a good question to have framed and post it on the wall, to look at every day.

    Something else that can be useful is, once in a while, for one day, I write a log of what I do all day. It sounds like it might be boring and tedious, and yes it can be. But it is only for one day and you get a good look at what you are doing and where your time goes. Then you can focus on eliminating those tasks you just don’t want to do. Like you did with the examples here.

    Regarding that great idea of collectively hire an assistant… one way to do that is to try out oDesk. There are VAs there that you can hire for as little or as much work as you and they want. Other people all over the world can hire them too. So you may be just one of their many employers. It works out well for everybody. I kept putting off trying that site but once I did it I was like, “OMG what the heck took me so long to get some peeps helping me with tasks I don’t enjoy doing myself?!” It is a great weight off your mind to delegate stuff to a smart helper.

    Thanks for the great article. It made my day :)

    Mark Nolan

    • Thanks Mark. :)

      Odesk is good, but I want someone who can use the phone *and* who I can build a relationship with. I want someone who will grow with my business, not just someone to do a few tasks for me like an oDesk VA.

  21. Great blog. This is VERY timely for me. I am refusing to take another soul sucking job just for the paycheck. I am educated and I am got that education because I have a passion for my chosen field but due to having to pay the bills, I took the first thing that came along because it paid decent. Not anymore. I am only looking for jobs in my field that I would absolutely love. No more compromising or just because. I wasted too much time and energy on that. Keep the great posts coming.

  22. Related to this – I like to take a moment & ask myself “what’s the simplest thing to do right now that I’m not seeing BECAUSE it’s so damn simple” and usually it turns out that there’s nothing to do. Bam – simple!

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