Some of the best relationship advice I’ve ever received came from my grandma, who’s been married for almost 60 years: “There were always moments when one or the other could have left, but what better thing might follow?”
What she meant was that, most of the time, an easier relationship won’t just magically fall into our lap just because we’ve decided our current one is too hard to maintain. Therefore, unless something absolutely fundamental is off, chances are, you’re better off working on your existing relationship. No partner will ever be perfect, but almost any two people can get along if they figure out the how and keep adjusting it.
Relationships might be the most obvious example, but the older I get, the more areas of life this principle seems to apply to: The rewards are right in front of you — but only if you choose to work for them.
Nine out of ten times, it is not necessary to abandon what you’re doing. Sometimes, it will still be the right choice to give up and try something else. Most of the time, however, a shift in perspective, and perhaps a little extra patience, will do.
When your side hustle’s growth is stalling, it means you’ll have to be a little more creative in getting to the next level. If your flat has a bunch of racked up problems, that’s a challenge to up your DIY skills. And if you’re family is in conflict, it might be time to start mediating.
It’s always harder to face adversity in the moment. You know exactly what you’re getting if you choose to stay, and initially, it’ll be nothing but a fat stack of problems. In the long run, however, the satisfaction of figuring something out after committing to it runs much deeper than the shallow joy of being a beginner yet again.
In life, the rewards grow where you work for them, and without work, there won’t be any rewards, no matter where you are. Therefore, you might as well look around, pick up a shovel, and start digging. After all, you could always leave, but what better thing might follow?