“The merit of all things lies in their difficulty.”
― Alexandre Dumas, The Three Musketeers
My first job fresh out of college was with a call center. I spent two years doing email support before getting hired to do phone support for Adobe programs. It was a job I truly loved not only because of the prestige but because I was passionate about everything related to graphic design.
Settling in to the new job wasn’t easy at first. I didn’t have the phone skills required so I went through months of training and mock calls before I began to get comfortable on the phone.
I mumbled, panicked, and almost blanked out on occasions because I got overwhelmed but just like everything in life, practice makes perfect. I soon got the skills I needed and so after a month or two, I was ready. Well, at least I thought I was.
Adobe has a big line of products like Acrobat, Photoshop, Illustrator, Pagemaker, and Premiere to name a few. Of course if one is to provide support for such products, you need to undergo technical training for each one of them. And so I did.
After four months on the new job, I was finally ready. Armed with the knowledge and skills required, I was able to finally get on the queue and help my teammates out and just when I though everything was supposed to be where they are already, I was in for yet, another surprise.
As part of the Adobe Technical Support team, we were required to undergo product certification. We were asked to choose which program to certify on so I had a decision to make.
From among the programs we had, no one chose Premiere. Adobe Premiere is a video-editing program and back then, only one guy from the team supported it. He was our team leader, Miguel who unfortunately died at a young age due to a car accident. God rest his soul.
Everyone in the team feared Premiere. Every time there was a call from a customer who has problems with Premiere, the team was in panic. No one wants to handle the call because being a video-editing program, it requires knowledge of hardware too like cameras and capture cards (which was popular back then and very pricey) which people from our team find difficult.
Imagine everyone’s horror when Miguel was not around. One must weather the storm and wait for him to come back or end up telling the customer that “our Premiere expert will call you back.”
I found this to be challenging so when it came time to decide which program to certify on, in the great words of Barney Stinson from How I Met Your Mother fame, I told myself: CHALLENGE ACCEPTED!
I chose Premiere much to everyone’s surprise. Some of my teammates laughed and some asked me if I was crazy. I wasn’t trying to prove something, honestly. It was the fact that everyone was trying to elude this program that captivated me and prompted me to choose it over the others. It was a skill that only a few had and I want to be part of the selected few.
I studied for four months and luckily got the guidance of Miguel before he tragically passed away. I passed the certification with flying colors and took over for Miguel as the team’s Premiere go-to guy.
Don’t Say It’s Difficult Unless You’ve Tried
I would have chosen another program if I listened to the “negative publicity” about Premiere. If I believed my teammates that it was difficult as advertised, I would not have learned how to edit videos and have a side hustle (I did freelance back then).
We often do this in our daily lives too. We often fore go opportunities we consider difficult over those that we consider easy and doable without knowing the reward that awaits us for doing such difficult tasks.
My daughter Shae is very picky when it comes to food. There are so many dishes that she dislikes even if she haven’t even tasted them. One time we were at this restaurant and we were served with one of the more popular Filipino desserts called leche flan.
We asked her to taste it but she wasn’t interested. We told her to just try but she was defiant. After much encouragement, she finally budged in and when she got to taste it, her eyes lit up!
She liked it and it has become one of her favorites since.
Sometimes you have to try something first before you say it’s difficult and totally write it off because it is in these difficult things that we can get the biggest rewards.
Difficult is Better
If you’re trying to lose weight, the results come much faster when you push yourself to the limit. You will lose more if you exercise for an hour and lose less if you work out for thirty minutes a day. That’s not rocket science but if you want to lose weight and have a sculpted figure with six packs and all, you have to put more work than the usual.
I was looking at these cross-fit videos in YouTube because I was looking for an alternative for yoga. I heard from a friend that cross-fit training will not only let you lose more weight, it will even give you the body of MMA fighters so why not give it a try right?
It’s 20 crunches, 15 squats, and 10 push ups per round. You have to do as many rounds as you can in a span of 10 minutes. How difficult can it be? Right?
Well, I tried it, got to do 5 rounds but I almost collapsed!
I was out of breath after those grueling 5 rounds when I tried it for the first time but it got easier during the next. Hopefully, I can lose weight with this new exercise so I’m asking for all your prayers.
Kidding aside, in order for us to succeed in our endeavors, sometimes we need to choose to do the difficult things over the easy ones because it is through these difficult things that we discover skills and abilities we didn’t know we possessed. It is through these difficult things that we are able to harness our creativity and resourcefulness.
Over to You
In life, not everyone is dealt with the better hand. Some of us need to go through the toughest ordeals and situations that prove to be difficult literally and figuratively but that’s where character is built.
You can’t give up on life or career because it’s too difficult. You can’t just tell your boss that you can’t do the job. You can’t tell yourself that you’re just going to live in mediocrity because it’s easier.
If you want to get the most out of life, you have to thrive on difficulty because great things aren’t achieved overnight.
Success won’t come unless you work your butt off!
Have you ever passed on an opportunity because you found it difficult?
I would love to hear from you so feel free to leave a comment or feedback below.
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