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The Easiest Way to Turn Tedious Tasks into Joyful Rituals

By | Greg McKeown | Author of 2 NYTs bestsellers: “Effortless” and “Essentialism”

Dear Essentialists, 

Why must fun and work be separate activities?

One of the most common phrases among high achievers is “Work hard, play hard”. But there’s something fundamentally wrong with this phrase. 

It suggests we must endure what we have to do in order to get to what we want to do.

Of course, not everything that’s Essential is enjoyable. But you can make almost any tedious task better when you pair it with something you love. 

Here are some examples I’ve come across:

  • I recently responded to a backlog of voicemails while sitting in my hot tub
  • A friend of mine pairs exercising with listening to his favorite podcast
  • My wife Anna and I eat chocolate-covered almonds and listen to our favorite songs while we create the family budget

Combining a difficult but Essential task with something you enjoy can turn a task you endure into a ritual you look forward to. 

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