Anthony Iannarino is an international speaker, bestselling author, sales leader, and entrepreneur. He posts daily sales tips and insights to The Sales Blog.

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Your Criticism Should Be Aimed at the Lazy

alt text image of a lazy panda

It’s popular to rail against the social media figures that suggest that you should hustle and grind. Some find the idea of people working too much, too hard, and for too long to be bad advice, suggesting life is more than constant work. You will be warned to put your relationships before work, an idea with which I mostly agree, but not if your laziness prevents you from taking care of the people who make up those relationships.

The criticism about people hustling and grinding applies to a small percentage of the overall population, with very few of them working themselves to death, or even to the point of burnout. The better criticism and unsolicited advice would be better directed towards those who are lazy, doing too little, with too little energy, and who avoid work.

Unwilling to Work

When you are born, other people take care of you, making you a dependent. As you grow up, those people have to help make you independent—and you must become a self-sustaining, productive human being, as defined by whatever you believe those words mean. Choosing to be lazy is to violate the laws of nature.

Nature requires you to expend effort to provide for your needs, like food, water, shelter, transportation, a Netflix membership, and excellent internet bandwidth. Nature doesn’t care whether you believe you should have to provide for yourself or not, and reality doesn’t mind hurting your feelings, nor does it care whether or not you suffer.

If you like, you can choose to be unwilling to work (and it is a choice). You can choose to be idle, becoming less, doing less, having less, and contributing less. However, that is not what you were made for; you were made to exert effort, to create something useful to other people, to work.

You might also put comfort, distraction, and entertainment before work, allowing it to crowd out what you should be doing, as well as taking your mind off the fact that you are procrastinating. What prevents laziness is your ability to will yourself to work, or self-discipline, or what I call “me management,” as those who cannot manage themselves end up with difficulties that multiply over time.

If there is criticism to be directed at individuals about work, that critique should be for those who do too little—not that those whom some may believe do too much.

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