The other day, I came across this quote (attributed to Bernard Meltzer), and the truth of it sure does pack a punch: “Hard work is often the easy work you did not do at the proper time.”
It seems obvious, but…also not. When we’re faced with a difficult task, do we ever stop to think that it would’ve been easier if we had done it sooner? More likely, we just accept it as being inherently difficult, sigh deeply, and get on with it. But what if it didn’t have to be hard? It is, in fact, entirely possible for us to make our lives easier, just by taking care of our business at the right time.
I concede that procrastinating has, on occasion, resulted in a problem going away or resolving itself. But more often, it blows the situation up into something far more unpleasant, like a spot of mold devouring an entire peach overnight.
As always, what’s true in life is also true in travel. Finding a hotel in a popular city at peak season will be very hard if you’re doing it the day before you arrive. But it will be perfectly easy if you book your hotel well in advance – in other words, at the proper time.
It’s easier said than done, of course. But if we recognize that not everything has to be hard, and whether something is hard is often entirely within our own control, perhaps we can find the proper motivation to stop waiting and start doing.