It's not hard to fall into the trap of thinking that people always want things easy. Easy money, easy grades, easy everything.
So we go all out to help make things easy for them. We give them crutches, wheelchairs, cars, get-rich-quick schemes, affirmative action policies, a secret leg up in exams - whatever it takes for them to complete the race of life - and expect them to perform exponentially better as a result. And the funny thing is that we think we're doing them a favor.
But perhaps what we've forgotten is the fact that there are rarely any successes without a struggle. We forget that a marathon only yields gratification after those 30-km breakdowns, after those moments of stopping and wheezing desperately by the pavement, after those times when the ambulance seems a far more tempting proposition than the finish line.
We forget that passengers in leisurely 42-km car rides don't really win marathons.
I'm inclined to think that while, on the surface, the prospect of an easy win is always tempting - we're innately engineered to embrace challenges. After all, this is the paradox: the easier something is for you, the easier it will be for you to be lulled into complacency - and the less likely you will be to work on the said task or competency, to slug it out day by day, to finetune it to mastery. Contrary to that, I'd like to believe that hurdles and difficulties motivate people to rise to the challenge.
If I've seemed to be rather frustrated in some of my more recent posts, it's because I am. Someone asked me today, "Is anything troubling you?" I said nothing out of politeness. But really, if I'd spoken my mind, I'd probably have said: please return my hurdles to me.