When your decisions are always driven by what is convenient and easy, you miss the struggles that help provide a sense of accomplishment and meaning to life. There is a real benefit to doing something slow and difficult. Taking the road less traveled. To not following the crowd. To forging your own path. To pushing the envelope and trying new things.
Convenience has the ability to make other options unthinkable. Once you have used a washing machine, laundering clothes by hand seems irrational, even if it might be cheaper. After you have experienced streaming television, waiting to see a show at a prescribed hour seems silly, even a little undignified. To resist convenience — not to own a cellphone, not to use Google — has come to require a special kind of dedication that is often taken for eccentricity, if not fanaticism.
Today’s cult of convenience fails to acknowledge that difficulty is a constitutive feature of human experience. Convenience is all destination and no journey. But climbing a mountain is different from taking the tram to the top, even if you end up at the same place. We are becoming people who care mainly or only about outcomes. We are at risk of making most of our life experiences a series of trolley rides.
“Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty.”
~ Theodore Roosevelt