How necessary is a necessary evil? An important consideration with 2009 just ahead…

December 15, 2008 by Jared Goralnick

View from Barcelona terraceWhen you’re making a decision, especially an important one, there are often ‘necessary evils’ as part of the equation.  On the one hand, the ‘evil’ may sound like a ‘cost of doing business,’ but it may be more serious than that.

Perhaps you should strongly consider just how ‘necessary’ the ‘evil’ is.

I’m sitting in an apartment in Barcelona (view from my terrace above), where I’ll be for the rest of the month.  The last two days have been a whirlwind of Spanish, dancing, and discovery.  I already feel totally immersed, enough to recognize how important and different this world is.  (perhaps more on that in another post)

Then tonight I’ve once again gotten caught up on the web.  This past week I’ve been at the Le Web conference, where I got to spend serious time with really frickinsmart folks.  It made me realize that if I want AwayFind to succeed I have about 6 million things I need to do.  And I want to do them.

So these are examples of priorities.  I have others, as well as many responsibilities, some of which I enjoy and some that are necessary evils.  As we get older, that seems to become our realities.  And yet.

Which of these financial, practical, and always-been-there responsibilities are weighing me down too much?  What would happen if I just changed?  4,034 miles away, things back in the States feel unreal.  The truth is, reality is what you make of it.  And I doubt I could screw up that bad.

How about you—what do you want to do next year?  It’s almost 2009.  When you start plotting out your ambitions, what’s holding you back?  Do you really need that extra job or new device?  What can you do so that your day is free from necessary evils but instead is aligned with things you’re passionate about?

If a necessary evil is against who you want to be, is it really necessary?  I think many of my assumptions about what needs to continue as-it-always-was were unfounded.  How about yours?

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6 Responses to “How necessary is a necessary evil? An important consideration with 2009 just ahead…”

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  1. mark_hayward (mark_hayward)

    Reading @technotheory ‘s How necessary is a necessary evil? An important consideration with 2009 just ahead –

  2. peggyhoffman (Peggy Hoffman)

    not sure about me but what you – what necessary evils can you eliminate


  1. Anthony Mendez


    I’ve come to realize that “necessary” is indeed relative and predicated on our desired outcome. Thinking from the end has proven to be a major step toward unloading some of my “evils” as I make sometimes-drastic decisions on detaching myself from certain outcome. In 2009 I intend to diversify my investments of time while keeping in mind what outcome I will be “okay” with.


  2. Jared Goralnick

    Thanks for the insight and empathy, Anthony. You’ve phrased it well–looking at things with the end in mind and working backwards. All of a sudden we recognize the full weight of some of the supposedly necessary things…and then we need to take a step back and reconsider.

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