Take the Harder Way

Nathan A. Cunningham
2 min readJul 9, 2017


The harder way to Zabriskie Point lookout in Death Valley, CA

I’ve had a tendency to learn things the hard way — initially because I was stubborn and arrogant, but more recently because I’ve come to realize that the hard way is sometimes the right way and often the only way to learn. When you acknowledge that success is about the journey and not the destination, you realize that its the friction, resistance, and pain that’s making you stronger. We see this in athletics and physical fitness, but sometimes we think that there is an easier road in business or personal development.

The current CIO of Hubspot Frank Auger fleshes this out in the area of career growth. Here is a helpful list he’s compiled when people ask for advice on how to grow in their career. These actually make your job harder. This is more than working for a pay-check or the weekend.

Here is the list (all credit to Frank):

  • Develop skills
  • Solve problems
  • Demonstrate your potential
  • Network
  • Don’t be afraid to take risks
  • Seize the opportunities that come your way even if they weren’t what you were expecting
  • Be the person the world needs right now; don’t wait for the world to conform to your plan

Check out the entire article here.

Think about growth for a moment.

Remember growing pains when you were a kid?

Or, what did it take to get and maintain that six pack, those guns?


Ok, obviously Dwight misses the point based on those results. ;-)

What about that first huge win at work? That first job you landed?
The career impacting accomplishment?
The big debt finally paid off?

Typically those mile markers of success involved growth that required hard work, sweat, tears, pain, trying and trying again.


Its called a growth mindset, but it’s hard.

So here is a challenge to all of us. You won’t regret it.

Take the harder way.



Nathan A. Cunningham

Connector of Dots and People; Minder of Gaps.