What's Easy. What's Not. - Christine Kane

It’s easy to be right.
It’s not easy to be kind.

It’s easy to hope.
It’s not easy to know.

It’s easy to be a damsel.
It’s not easy to be a heroine.

It’s easy to complain.
It’s not easy to make requests.

It’s easy to have all kinds of retorts for the other person if they’d just shut up.
It’s not easy to listen.

It’s easy to be busy.
It’s not easy to be productive.

It’s easy to criticize.
It’s not easy to create.

It’s easy to say you don’t feel like it.
It’s not easy to do it anyway.

It’s easy to obsess.
It’s not easy to meditate.

It’s easy to sing your heart out when the audience loves you.
It’s not easy to sing your heart out when no one is paying attention.

It’s easy to wait for rescue.
It’s not easy to rescue yourself.

It’s easy to resent people who take up your time.
It’s not easy to say no in the first place.

It’s easy to make excuses.
It’s not easy to take responsibility.

It’s easy to worry.
It’s not easy to make a plan.

It’s easy to come up with reasons why someone pissed you off.
It’s not easy to ask yourself how you participated.

It’s easy to dabble.
It’s not easy to commit.

It’s easy to flip the bird to the idiot driver behind you.
It’s not easy to just move out of his way.

It’s easy to read books about writing.
It’s not easy to sit down and write.

It’s easy to say no to bad things because you want good things.
It’s not easy to say no to good things because you want great things.

It’s easy to fire off an angry email or blog comment.
It’s not easy to pause and breathe and clarify your feelings.

It’s easy to react to an angry email or blog comment by firing one back.
It’s not easy to pause and breathe and clarify your meaning.

It’s easy to start writing a song.
It’s not easy to finish writing a song.

It’s easy to buy something cheap because it’s cheap.
It’s not easy to buy something expensive because you love it.

It’s easy to say you don’t know what you want.
It’s not easy to admit what you want.

It’s easy to let a kid watch TV.
It’s not easy to find ways to play with a kid.

It’s easy to do urgent things.
It’s not easy to do important things.

It’s easy to say it’s too hard.
It’s worth it to do what’s not easy.


  • sonali

    m a student just done with graduation n planning to start a business soon. i dnt remember hw i came across your blog and read most of the stuff and its really cool :))

  • sonali


  • David [at] SlowDownFast.com


    Outstanding! You put this into perspective more eloquently than most I’ve read or heard.

    Thank you.

  • Nneka | Spirituality Blog

    Hi Christine, this is one for the wall. Great post!

    In Spirit,

  • JHS

    Thanks for participating in this week’s Carnival of Family Life. It will be posted at midnight (PDT) at http://www.jhsiess.com!

  • marlajayne

    Enjoyed reading these couplets (sp). A quick comment on one of them. “It’s easy to be right. It’s not easy to be kind,” makes me think of something that Marianne Williamson said in one her books (The Return of Love, I think). She said that whenever she was confronted with a situation that was contentious and that she knew she could win, she always asked herself, “Do I want to be right, or do I want to feel peace?”

    That question made me stop and think because it’s easy to win an argument, have the last word, put someone in her/his place, but you only feel good for about five minutes. I opt for peace.

  • Andrea Hess

    Wow – that is just beautiful. It’s made me think about why those things should be so very difficult. Hmmmm …


  • Laura Young

    Oh I love this. Thank you so much for submitting this to the Carnival of Courage. I made it the lead off article. Very nicely done! If you want the link, here ’tis. Lots of great submissions this issue so you may find some like minded bloggers among them if you feel like surfing over.

  • Diane


    Thank you so much for your blog . . . which I’ve been reading regularly for months.
    (It’s easy to be a lurker. It’s not easy to write a meaningful comment.)

    You make me think, you inspire me, you make me laugh . .

  • polly curtis

    thank you Christine.

  • libby

    Sounds like song lyrics to me. When will we get to hear the musical version?

  • Christine Kane

    More thanks to everyone for writing. I’ve just gotten back to my computer after lots of teaching last week. For those of you who read this post and shrank a little – it’s not meant to be a standard of perfection – just something to move towards. I started writing it after I had to turn off the computer in order to not get angry back at someone who had sent an angry email to me. So, I have to work at this stuff just as hard as all of us! (And Caren’s right – lots of these have gotten easier with time.)

    Thanks for the donation, Meg!

  • jen

    Ouch, I think you just said it all. Not always easy to admit, but easy is usually the way life goes. Thanks for the black and white wake up call today. Sometimes we all just need someone to point out the obvious for us. You are very gifted.

  • Jeanne

    Poster, oh yes, PLEASE, a poster. There are so many times when my kids (20, 21, 22) are going on and on about things, not willing to listen to a parent – and I could just point them at the poster. All those life lessons we resist learning.

    We won’t mention how much help it would be to ME whose desk it would be in front of, right?

    thanks for wonderful insights, always!

  • m

    Christine I’m going through a very difficult work situation right now and almost every sentence speaks to me!

  • Coll

    Found this to be quite inspiring. The words had me looking inward.

  • mk

    oooooohhhhhh me likey! 🙂 see you next week.

  • Kloudiia

    You really inspire me Christine. You truly do.

    This is such a beautiful piece of work you’ve written. Full of wisdom, nice thoughts and life-changing words.

    Thank you …

  • Caren

    So… there was some discussion on one of the e-mail lists I forwarded this to, that one should *never* hang something like this up – they said these are affirmations! And saying something isn’t easy, makes it so. Baloney, I say. I think it’s about making conscious choices. Severe misunderstanding of what an affirmation is, and LOA. Just sayin’…

    OK – so Christine, perhaps you can accept submissions from all of your visual artist friends to make posters, and you can let your loving, discerning readers choose which one(s) get printed. You can also form a committee to look at the possibility of doing that, another committee to form guidelines, etc. You know, in case you needed something a little more complicated to do!

    I have a feeling wonderful energy is being generated by your participation in the Gathering – for you, as well as your students! Here’s to flowing with that wave ~

  • lisa

    Thank you!

  • Jaime

    Fabulous, magnifico, exquisite…Christine, I’ve been reading your Blog for months now and got to tell you, this one prompted me to leave a reply…not that the other ones aren’t as good but this one is just great!! It captures the main essence of your blogs which I think is to provoke profound thought and create change. Thanks for your work…and got to tell you…every time I read your blog I’m a happy person. “Pensar es crear”

  • Christine Kane

    hello everyone – just so you know…i’m teaching two songwriting intensives this week, every single day. and i’m on the campus at a college – with one on one lessons as well. So, i don’t have much time in front of the computer. thanks for all the comments. i’ll be writing soon. (and lisa – i’ll be in touch via email! 🙂 ) i could design the poster myself – but i’m not sure if everyone would enjoy my stick figure ponies standing under my lollipop apple trees.

  • Meg

    it is easy to say I like an artist’s work as i experience the finished work
    it is not easy to acknowledge the time, disciplne and committment that went into creating it

    it is easy to think i am supporting an arist when i buy their work
    it is not easy to take the time to say thanks directly by supporting their livelihood in what ever way i may be able

    So, “thanks” and “thanks again (by-way-of-paypal)”!

    that WAS easy after all.

  • Caren

    I did! Very impressive. Thanks!

  • Corinne Edwards

    Dear Caren –

    Want to tell you a true story about Oriah Mountain Dreamer and The Invitation.

    I had a TV show for many years on Wisdom Television and Oriah was booked for an interview.

    Then, she got a request for the SAME DAY to appear on Oprah! As you know, that is Mecca for an author.

    She told them she was booked with me and would they reschedule. Her publicist went crazy!

    But, Oprah’s people were so impressed with her integrity, they did it!

    There are some wonderful authors out there who walk the talk they talk.

    Thought you would enjoy hearing that true story.

    Corinne Edwards

  • Christi

    I love the idea of a wall poster of this – I’d definitely want to purchase it.

    What a wonderful and inspiring piece! Thank you, Christine. I feel a shift in my thinking each time I read this blog, and I love it. You may never know how many lives you’ve changed or how many people you’ve encouraged to live differently and better.

    (Or if you check your stats, maybe you do have an idea…but still.)

  • Hagit

    Excellent! So true…

  • Scot Herrick

    It’s easy to destroy.
    It’s not easy to build.

    Thanks for such great content, Christine.

  • Kay

    A poster of this is a great idea!!! Put my name on the pre order list. Thanks again Christine!! I was out of town this weekend but wanted to know, did you play at Bele Chere and was it easy to keep up your busy schedule recently and play there? Also, is it easy to schedule another concert at the Diana Wortham Theatre?

  • MB

    “It’s worth it to do what’s not easy.”
    Bam! Home run.

  • Marina

    “It’s easy to say you don’t know what you want.
    It’s not easy to admit what you want.”

    I wrote this down in my journal, this is something that I need to work on and remind myself of more often. I’m working on it though!

    Thanks for the great reminders Christine.

  • Caralu

    With great chagrin, I see that I do what’s easy…virtually all the time. I need to contemplate this list daily…off to print it and tack it on the wall.

  • lisa

    ps. PLEASE allow me to create a poster and/or greeting card carrying your message in this blog. let’s connect off this board to work out the details. it would be my HONOR.

  • lisa

    Christine, this blog offering is exactly why i felt not only nudged, but shoved to introduce your blog to the folks on my e.newsletter list.
    you’ve nailed IT, once again. THANKS.
    i send you all that is good.

  • Rebecca

    I might be especially guilty of this one:
    It’s easy to flip the bird to the idiot driver behind you.
    It’s not easy to just move out of his way.

  • Caren

    Speaking of The Invitation… you should print this up on posters, in groovy script with sufficiently new-agey pictures. You know some artists, right? I mean visual artists, I guess.

  • Caren

    Can I be proud that several of the “not easy” things ARE easy for me? 😀 I am. It’s taken some work!

    I love, love, love this post – I have a feeling it will circulate ’round the internet for a while to come. Then you can write a book, a la Oriah Mountain Dreamer and The Invitation.

  • Mindi

    “It’s easy to read books about writing.
    It’s not easy to sit down and write.”

    How true. I might also add:
    “It’s easy to have a B.A. in Creative Writing.
    It’s not easy to write for a living.”

    I’m still learning how to bring creative writing back into my life again.

  • Christine Kane

    chris a. and nancycz – thanks for the notes! 🙂

    hiya angie – yes, you can print any blog out and just give me the necessary writer’s credits, etc. Thanks..

    that’s EXACTLY what i’m saying brad! 🙂

    thanks petra – and you’re right. being a heroine is usually much easier than we think it’s gonna be. so we often wait around for that “something” to make life better.

  • Petra

    You said

    “It’s easy to be a damsel.
    It’s not easy to be a heroine.”

    So true! Yet everytime I do something myself instead of waiting for someone else to do it for me, I become the heroine of my own life. I like that! I feel stronger and more empowered then! And after reading this post, I thought about my own life and the “heroic” things I’ve done by myself–moved a thousand miles away (as well as moving to a new country once), buying a house on my own, etc. Heroism needn’t be grand. Heck, taking charge of one’s finances can be pretty darn heroic!

    You also wrote:
    It’s easy to buy something cheap because it’s cheap.
    It’s not easy to buy something expensive because you love it.

    I started doing this years ago–only buying things that I love, regardless of whether or not it’s on sale. As a result, I am becoming surrounded by things I love (and I’m buying less, too!)

    Christine, your blog posts are the most inspirational and thought-provoking things I read. I love them!

  • Brad

    Are you saying I’m easy??? HA! 😉

  • Angie Hartford

    I do wish this post had been a part of my school’s curriculum.

    I could probably still solve quadratic equations, but haven’t been called upon to do it outside of school, yet.

    I guess the next step is to see about posting this at my children’s schools. Do your readers have permission to use this post (with appropriate credits) for this purpose?

  • NancyCz

    what a great jumping off point for further reflection.

    thanks for this!

  • chris a.

    Thank you, Christine. This is what I needed to read today.

    [Of course it is! ;)]

  • Christine Kane

    thanks sheista!

  • sheista

    I’m going to print this out and share it with my children. These are things we work on everyday around here, but your simple, to the point approach will a new, refreshing approach to them.
    Thanks, again.

  • Christine Kane

    thanks jer, judy and ariff!

  • Ariff

    nice. a poetic, but straight to the point post. I find myself agreeing to everything you just wrote.

  • Judy

    Once again, packed with wisdom. Thanks!

  • Jer

    This reminds me of the George Harrison song, ‘See Yourself’. I like it. 🙂

  • Christine Kane

    hi danny! very true! thanks…

    susanne – i think it’s mostly because we never taught ourselves how.

  • Susanne

    Great list. I’m still thinking about why it’s so hard for us to do the things that are nurturing us.

  • Danny

    It is easy to say “Yeah! What SHE said!”
    It’s not easy to live what she said.

    Despite that, I agree wholeheartedly.