by Joseph Coletti
Senior Fellow, Fiscal Studies, John Locke Foundation
Kevan Kjar has helped me understand a lot about the importance of telling a story. Like all good advice, I heed it more in the breach. Kevan has some stickers printed with the phrase “Do Hard Things.”
Yes, there’s a story behind the sticker. Reading the review of Tom Hodgkinson’s Business for Bohemians reminded me of Kevan’s stickers and suggested the corollary, “Do Boring Things.”
“If you want freedom,” Mr. Hodgkinson says, “then you have to take responsibility.” For him, that meant learning subjects and habits that his bohemian self considered beneath him, such as “opening the boring post and dealing with it.”
“Do boring things” is the solid parental advice you don’t want to hear. But it is the tediously quotidian and hum-drum boring tasks can present the biggest challenges because they get in the way of the fun things, but they are what make the fun things possible. “Do hard things” has a challenge to it that acts like a sharpened arrowhead to puncture the heart, which reflects Kevan’s genius. Hard or boring, it is in the doing of things that work shapes our character. Time to get back to them.