I've been noticing a trend as of late that revolves around the word "easy." Have you seen it too? That word: easy. It's showing up in blog posts and article titles and is thrown around in a way that can only be categorized as careless.
I try to be pretty careful with my own use of the word—especially when it comes to describing a craft, skill, hobby or process. Certain things do come easily(ish) to me, but I know that my comfort level may have come with practice or predisposition. And others have strengths in areas that are completely foreign to me. What comes easily to them, I may never master.
Because the term can oftentimes do more harm than good, I've come up with a few ways to avoid it all together:
Simply replace the word "easy" with the word "simple."
While the two are synonymous, the word "simple" conveys a lack of difficulty without sounding presumptuous. This particularly comes into play when describing a project. A "simple" project might consist of very few steps or necessary materials. We all have different skill sets and abilities, right? Therefore, I'm not sure any project is really "easy" for everyone out there.
Work to demystify a process or skill.
Some skills or hobbies might take a lot of practice or research, yet I still see the word "easy" applied to them all the time. If something has more than three steps, I'm not sure it really qualifies as easy. This can be remedied by clarifying the language surrounding the process you're trying to demystify for others. You can oftentimes take what you've learned and simplify it for whatever audience or group you're trying to reach. And they'll thank you for it!
Find solace in others who have walked the same path.
They say that misery loves company, but I've found that shared experiences are simply more powerful much of the time. Be real with those around you about whatever experience you're trying to describe. If it wasn't easy for you, it probably wasn't easy for others. Additionally, those who might walk a similar path in the future will probably find comfort knowing that it wasn't easy for you at first, either.
So, can we all agree to take it easy with "easy?" I feel like we all owe each other a softer, kinder, gentler take on life's journeys, but I'd love to know your thoughts on the matter.