“Growth Hacking” … “Diet-Hacking” … “Bio-Hacking” … “Life-hacking” … “Hack-Hacking”

Since the early 2000’s, the concept of “hacking” every aspect of our life has led to a whole industry from supplements, to books, touting increased productivity, wealth and everything in between.

Buy this supplement, follow this guru, do this one trick

What sounds like a good idea, rarely is, and I’ll explain why

Hacking indicates seeking a shortcut … A way around the “work”

Let me give you a biological example.10 year old Jonny wants to “hack” his growth. So doctors start administering growth hormone, along with testosterone.

Now Jonny is growing twice as fast as he would naturally … This is good, right? He’ll reach his goal of being bigger, taller, stronger in less time.

Except … Except, now he might be suffering from medically induced gigantism, and all the problems it brings.

The problem with increasing his physical stature, means that there are other areas of development that lag behind, for example his heart might not be able to deliver blood effectively.

Some things, you can’t hack.

So, now there’s a tremendous imbalance in place, and it’s going to be very very difficult to correct.

How about lottery winners? They “hacked” life, by taking a shortcut to being financially set, never needing to worry about income again … Yet history is littered with tragic tales of lottery winners in ruins.

This desire for a shortcut comes from this idea that happiness is a destination, and if you can reach that destination sooner, that you’ll be happier sooner.

But, there’s a serious flaw in a mindset that says “I don’t want to do the work” … Not only is it a flaw, you’re actually missing out on something really really valuable.

There’s something about doing the work, spending time in the process, where immense growth and learning takes place by virtue of not being able to take a shortcut.

When you spend time in the place where you don’t have answers presently, this drives creativity and innovation, and character development.

You can’t hack character. You can’t hack integrity. You can’t hack wisdom. These are the rewards of those who are willing to endure hardship and difficulty.

But, the other thing is, joy, appreciation, gratitude, these all come from hardship too.

When we embrace the process, and make the process the goal, we then open ourselves up to a world of possibilities.

But more importantly, happiness doesn’t lie in a destination.

Happiness lies in doing meaningful work.

The joy of knowing that each day you wake up with the opportunity to work towards something purposeful.

The most meaningful and important things, do not have shortcuts. That’s the very reason WHY they are so meaningful, because they are challenging to obtain.

But, when we do “the work”, we find out that we end up being rewarded with even more than we thought possible.