Adonis Diaries

Do you prefer to take the shortcut or this magic formula?

Posted on: October 9, 2011

Do you prefer to take the shortcut or this magic formula?
Do you mostly look for the easy way out? Do you find it hard to accept that most things are hard to do and require hard work?  For example: “Hanane! What can I do to cut this pattern?” It is inspiring to read notesby.me post:

“Will you take the shortcut or this magic formula?

As a project, my sister has to create a similar pattern to the picture above. She has to cut out all the small white spaces in between the lines.  The straight forward way is to draw by hand, take a cutter, and start cutting. She expects the whole process to be so time consuming that she won’t make it in time. She expects the process to take a week. I’ve been there. (William finished 6 years of architecture, but refused to do his final project.  He graduated in graphic design…)

William resumed: “I know from experience that the process takes a day, or two days at most.  I told my sister the realistic time frame that the project would take, but she wasn’t convinced.

So she starts looking for a shortcut.  She said: “I can cut it using a lazer cutter. But then I need to create the file digitally. I can do that. But I don’t know how to use Illustrator. I’ll have to learn how to use Illustrator. But this process will take time. I can’t do it. Hanane! What can I do to cut this pattern?” Adrea goes on like this for 3 days. Yes you read that right.  Three days of trying to find a shortcut.

If she had accepted that she has to do the hard work. If she sat down from day one and started doing the hard work, she would’ve been done is a couple of days.

Do you mostly look for the easy way out? Do you find it hard to accept that most things are hard to do and require hard work?

By searching for an easier way, you always end up doing nothing. You end up wasting a lot of time in your quest to avoid doing the hard thing. And that’s not all.

It turned out that the hard thing ends up taking a lot less time than you had ever expected. And it also turns out that the hard thing is a whole lot easier than what you expected it to be. Sometimes it’s unbelievably silly.

Cutting that pattern above is not hard. Nor will it take a week. It took me a day when I did it. Accept to do the hard work. Do the hard work. Skip looking for a shortcut. You’ll get a lot more done. Guaranteed. And there’s an up side to it.

Once you’re done with the work, people observing from the outside will be amazed. Why? Because, just like you, they too will have expected the project to take too much time and be extremely hard. Why? They didn’t do it before. They don’t know that, in reality, it takes much less time and effort than expected. And so they will amazed.

Keep doing the “apparently” hard work, consistently, and people will constantly be amazed at all the “hard” things that you keep producing. They’ll wonder where you get the time and energy. “You must have a magic formula” they say. And now you do.

It’s now the 6th day, the project is due tomorrow, my sister decided to take the lazer shortcut just yesterday. She probably won’t make it. One day is not enough for her to learn illustrator, draw the whole pattern digitally, get it cut, and then color it.

I did tell her all of this on Day One. Do you think telling someone about a lesson is enough for them to try it? Apparently not. Just like you won’t learn this lesson until the next time you take the shortcut and suffer the consequences.

In your next project, will you try the magic formula instead?” (End of quote)

I got the version of Adrea.  She said that she had two other projects to tend to, and they were even more demanding and important (at least from her perspective).  Trying to find a short cut was legitimate. Why? She knows by now that cutting the pattern by hand will cripple her hand before starting on the other two projects.

Anyway, there is no harm learning to be pragmatic by investigating for some time (not three days though) to doing a good job.  This line of thinking can help for the successive time-consuming projects that require cutting.

The problem is the lack of coordination among the teachers, before throwing around haphazardly homework and projects. There got to be a balance of mental and hand work usage among the projects:  You don’t want all the projects to physically cripple students, just because teachers work in isolation, or display their ego at the expense of hapless students.

Note: It is becoming too ridiculous to graduate in graphic design, architecture, fashion design…The expense incurred on materials, tools, and specialized graphic presses…are many folds the cost of the high tuition fees.  Teachers, parent committees, and university administrators have to work out a maximum affordable cost for every single project.  Time for universities that offer these specialties to invest in labs, equipments and affordable materials…Aren’t labs meant to using them and training students in the proper ways of executing projects?

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adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

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