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(DAY 27) Hard part about the right thing

· 2 min read
Gaurav Parashar

The hard part isn't knowing what the right thing to do is. The hard part is doing it

Breaking down a problem statement

If I break a tough problem into atomic sub-problems, the order of difficulty reduces drastically.

Let's take an example, if I want to run a marathon (which I do not enjoy), I know that I will not be able to start with 21km running. If instead I break it down to training routine like below - thanks to Puneet Yadav for breaking it down, I have a greater chance of picking it up:

  • Week 1: 2-3 km with 2 breaks
  • Week 2: 3km with no break
  • Week 3: 5km with 2/3 breaks
  • Week 4: 5km with 1 break
  • Week 5: 7.5km with 2 breaks
  • Week 6: 10km with 2 breaks
  • Week 7: 10km with no break
  • Week 8: 15km with 2 breaks
  • Week 9-10: 15km with no break
  • Week 11: 18km with 1 break
  • Week 12: 21km with no break

Knowing vs doing the right thing

The above conversation with Puneet was from Mar 2022, an year ago. It is one thing to know the right thing to do and another to do it.

I have found committing to a plan works well if the following conditions are met:

  1. You write it down, print it out or keep it top of mind digitally.
  2. You discuss the progress with friends or family. Especially when you are struggling.
  3. You celebrate the milestones - e.g. gift yourself something meaningful when you hit Week 5.
  4. You zoom in and zoom out repeatedly, seeing how far you have come and how far do you have to go.