Im not lazy

You're Not Lazy, Bored, or Unmotivated

This is a republishing of The Steady Fella Newsletter. Every week readers use the timeless insights on passion, productivity, philosophy, and happiness from this newsletter to build towards the life they want.

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Happy Sunday! This weeks newsletter is about the source of modern obstacles.

I don’t know you, but I do know 3 things about you:

  1. You have free time to consume information on the internet
  2. This means you’re in the top half of the worlds wealth distribution
  3. Which means you’re fighting modern human battles

Number 3 is the focus of this week’s newsletter.

You most likely have a roof over your head and a fridge full of food; therefore, your obstacles to happiness are largely abstract.

Things like laziness, boredom, procrastination, self-doubt and a lack of motivation are your struggles.

However, when we look closer, the common denominator of these modern struggles is fear. No matter how many struggles you can list off they’re ultimately the same thing.

So you’re not lazy, bored, or unmotivated - you’re just scared.

You’re not unmotivated

There is no such thing as not being motivated, simply because everything humans do is driven by an incentive - that’s how we function.

Whether it’s money, happiness, freedom, fun, etc. there’s always something driving us.

For example: you want to grow a YouTube channel but you say you have no motivation to do so.

In reality, you have motivation (fun, money, happiness, fame), it’s just that growing a YouTube channel makes you vulnerable and gives you the fear of failure.

So when you think you’re unmotivated, you’re actually just afraid of what it takes.

You’re not bored

You’re most likely lying whenever you say you’re bored. There’s no reason to be bored when technology gives us access to unlimited stimulation.

We only pretend to be bored so we can fill our time with meaningless distractions. Because without the distractions we have to face existential dread. Which is when you question whether your life has meaning, purpose, or value.

You’re not bored, you’re scared of being alone with your thoughts.

“All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.” - Blaise Pascal

You’re not lazy

Laziness is a scapegoat. We use the word when we can’t identify real issues.

David Price says, “no one wants to feel incapable, apathetic, or ineffective. If you look at a person’s action (or inaction) and see only laziness, you are missing key details.”

For example: if you have a friend that stays home all day, watches TV, and rarely wants to do anything else, they aren’t lazy. There’s likely an underlying factor - invisible boundaries in their head like self-doubt and a fear of embarrassment.

All of our abstract modern-day struggles are symptoms of the same disease - fear.

Fear was a tool that helped ancient humans survive, but now it’s a burden that prevents modern humans from being fulfilled.

If you want to learn how to overcome fear, I suggest reading a previous newsletter titled “The Old Instinct that Hurts Us Today”.

In the newsletter, I explain the techniques “systematic desensitization” and “removing ambiguity”, from neuroscientist Dean Burnett and author Tim Ferriss.

This weeks quote

We attract into our lives what we are - Benjamin Hardy

We get what we are worthy of. You can’t achieve a million-dollar dream with a minimum wage work ethic.

This weeks reflection

After reading this newsletter do you remember any instances where you thought you were bored, unmotivated, or lazy, but were really just afraid of something?

5 Signs That You’re Unmotivated, Not Lazy – Psych3Go

It’s common to lose your drive from time to time. And while it’s normal, losing motivation in important areas of your life like life in general and work can be particularly frustrating and depressing. It’s like someone blew out the candlelight of your life.

Losing motivation is usually seen as laziness to other people. In extreme cases, your lack of motivation can be  depression, which people still believe is laziness. While laziness is not doing anything and being able to , being unmotivated is wanting to do something but not being able to. Being unmotivated can be caused by a variety of things, so it’s important to identify what the cause is for you. 

Here are a few possible signs that you’re unmotivated and not lazy. 

  1. You Lack Purpose and Have a Negative Outlook

You might be unmotivated because you don’t know what you want in life and you haven’t really taken the time to find out what that is. You lack a North Star, which is your guiding light. When you have nothing to strive for and no goals to achieve, you have no reason to do anything.

If you suffer from negative self-talk and a pessimistic outlook, that can also destroy your motivation. If you believe that you can’t do something, you don’t believe that there’s a point to it and then the vicious cycle continues. 

  1. You’re Stressed

While ‘good’ stress exists and it can be used to spur you further towards your goals, ‘bad’ stress exists too. This is debilitating and can take away your energy that you would have better use for. 

When you have urgent deadlines, a messy inbox and a never-ending To-Do list, you can lose track of your own personal projects and goals and thus, making you very unmotivated to do your own tasks. 

  1. Your Surrounding Environment Is Draining You

As James Clear, best-selling author of the book Atomic Habits said, “environment is the invisible hand that shapes human behaviour.” When you have an environment that is not conducive to your success and well-being, you are going to have a harder time with being motivated.

Your home or work space can either drain and depress you or it can inspire and energize you. A negative place and  negative people play a big role in being motivated. If you dread the idea of going to work in the morning and dealing with people all day, you might subconsciously or intentionally show up late to work. 

  1. You Have Unrealistic Goals

A common cause of feeling unmotivated is having unrealistic goals. Goals are great but if you feel like they are a mountain too high to climb, you might want to break them down a bit to not be so daunting. 

When you don’t believe that you can accomplish a goal because you set a really high bar, you feel overwhelmed and it becomes easier for you to avoid getting started. Challenges mustn’t be out of your reach :they should pull you enough out of your comfort zone to get them done. 

  1. You Lack Structure and Routine

Interestingly, lacking structure and routine leads to a lack of motivation. Like I said, you probably don’t have a North Star. But if you do and you don’t have any place for your desire to be channeled towards, you’re not going to get anywhere. You might spend more time daydreaming about achieving your goals instead of actively executing your plans. 

This is also another common reason for lacking motivation. Building a habit gets you going and doing things even when you don’t want to do it. That’s why having a routine and structure is so important. 


While being unmotivated is crushing to your productivity and sometimes, self-confidence, the good news is that you can overcome your lack of internal drive and get your passion back. Devising a strategy to get it back will help you get back at your optimal level, instead of running on empty. Having moments of rest and leisure are important too and laziness isn’t the same as being unmotivated. And know that it’s okay to take some time to get your mojo back. 

See you soon. 


*Altrogge, S. (2021, November 30). Unmotivated? 8 proven strategies for when you’re feeling stuck. Freedom Matters. Retrieved February 9, 2022, from 

*Clear, J. (2020, February 4). Motivation is overvalued. environment often matters more. James Clear. Retrieved February 9, 2022, from  

*Draghici, A. (2022, January 6). Am I depressed or lazy? 10 ways to know the difference. Happier Human. Retrieved February 9, 2022, from 

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    " I'm not lazy - black" is a stylish print that will decorate your smartphone case, clothes and various accessories. Caption - I'm not lazy, I just save energy.

    Case for smartphone is the most popular accessory in demand these days. We live in the world of smartphones, we are surrounded by a huge variety of models, and for each of them, whether it is a smartphone released a year ago or a new flagship, you can choose a smartphone case. Lightweight, stylish and durable silicone case perfectly protects the smartphone from scratches and chips when dropped, while it does not break or crack, and high-quality print can be applied to its surface. It can be a pattern, a photo, an inscription and any bright print that you like. You can choose from conventional printing as well as 3D 3D printing. nine0003

    You can buy a cover for yourself, as well as as a gift for your friends and relatives.


    • Case type: protective slip case
    • Colors available: black, transparent
    • Case printing type: plain, 3d printing
    • Case material: silicone
    • 9003 maintenance instructions 3 : wash in warm water nine0003

      Gift box


      Lazy employees: are they good for the company?

      Bill Gates is credited with the phrase: "I will always look for a lazy person to work, because he will find many easy ways to solve the problem" . Is it true that this way of finding employees works? Are there companies that deliberately recruit lazy people? editors asked executives to share their thoughts and experiences on this thesis. We publish their comments. nine0003

      The best solutions are found not by the lazy, but by the inspired and enthusiastic

      Sergey Sredny, predictive analyst, expert

      I do not agree with this thesis of Bill Gates. Since a lazy employee will not always and even not necessarily look for less costly ways to solve a problem in the interests of the company. He can and most likely will simply do the work of insufficient quality, and then he will then have to spend time and effort on checking and finding his mistakes, and even worse, on reworking this work. nine0003

      The best (optimal in terms of quality / price) solutions, in my experience, do not belong to lazy employees at all, but to inspired and enthusiastic employees, for whom the search for solutions to their professional problems is an exciting quest that brings them not only money, but also pleasure . And the approval of the head and colleagues.

      Yes, such employees tend to be perfectionists and can complicate decisions. But having a more perfect solution from such a perfectionist, which can then be coarsened or simplified to any degree, is obviously more profitable than having a rough one from a lazy person. nine0003

      The rough solution contains an error and veils the details, which, as you know, are the devil. And their fundamental omission from sight can lead to fatal consequences.

      There is a theory that monkeys picked up sticks when they became too lazy to climb trees for bananas - this is partly true, but for a monkey to guess to pick up a stick, it must have intellectual potential, interest and some ethical principles for this, and not just being lazy.

      Some lazy monkeys picked up sticks and went to knock down bananas, while other lazy monkeys just started breaking banana trees and robbing the first ones. And to have such a thieving barbarian monkey in the staff of the company is the worst thing that can be. nine0003

      Lazy employees, regardless of their other abilities, I don't get along. I prefer not to hire such people and part with them if I fail to arouse in them an interest in work and light a fire in their eyes.

      A lazy person is a terrible problem for an organization

      Elena Breslav, leading methodologist of the department of methodological support of education, GSSU RANEPA, expert

      Strongly disagree. The quote from Bill Gates describes a person who is not lazy, but one who thinks and does it effectively easier than “what is there to think about, you need to jump!”. nine0003

      A truly lazy person - one who avoids work, unnecessary movements, does not want to do anything - this is a terrible problem for the organization. Even if the management scolds him, he has his toxic effect on those around him. If it is also “not noticed”, then the corrupting influence can be very strong.

      Lazy people do not take root in our company

      Inna Anisimova, General Director of the PR Partner communication agency

      Lazy people do not take root in our company: we have an intensive pace and high KPIs on projects, there is no time to procrastinate. nine0003

      Perhaps reasonable productivity is a more precise formulation of the quality that helps to find easy ways in work. It is faster and more efficient to get results if you do similar tasks in parallel or delegate mechanical work to junior specialists.

      For example, you can offer media several clients for expert commentary at the same time; make a manual distribution of a press release by an assistant; ask to make a selection of bloggers of the trainee, etc. It happened that a test person did not give out results. Two weeks is quite acceptable, this is a normal time for adaptation. For maximum immersion in the working pace, it is better to set clear goals and then ask for their completion at the end of the day and week. If, for a month or two, the specialist waited for the muse to prepare the text, or looked for those very easy ways, but did not find it, we said goodbye. nine0003

      We are not looking for lazy employees

      Alexander Shostak, director and co-founder of the bePaid service (IComCharge LLC), Republic of Belarus

      Bill Gates' statement is very interesting and has caused a lot of discussion for several years now. Perhaps it is taken out of context or even a fake. But even if he said so, maybe Gates specifically created conditions for his employees to be lazy and, as a result, become more efficient? I doubt this very much. nine0003

      We are not looking for such employees. On the one hand, it is almost impossible to identify whether a person is lazy or not on the basis of one, two or even three interviews. Although, of course, if at the interview the candidate said: "I'm lazy, but damn resourceful!" would be an interesting challenge for the company. And we would definitely give a person a chance to prove himself. Suddenly it's true?

      On the other hand, Bill Gates' thesis has never been confirmed in our real practice. There has never been an employee who dragged out the solution of a problem to the end and then gave out brilliant solutions. nine0003

      Laziness is not related to efficiency, so such employees should be parted without regret. Of course, making sure that low efficiency and half-hearted work are the result of laziness, and not some personal life circumstances.

      There are people who have a creative approach to solving problems, but this is not due to laziness, but to the inquisitiveness of the mind. They are interested in non-standard methods. And interest and laziness are diametrically opposed concepts. Such employees, with creative thinking, are really a godsend for the company. nine0003

      By the way, have you noticed that calling employees lazy has already become almost “politically incorrect”? “Procrastination”, “insufficient motivation”, “impaired workbalance” - dozens of “justifying” terms have appeared, behind which laziness can hide. Here it is important to figure out what is still worth it, and draw conclusions based on the check. But in any case, we do not think that laziness is worth justifying.

      Lazy = efficient

      Ruslan Posyada, founder and manager of Team Booster

      In my opinion, the meaning of this phrase is as follows: “I am looking for an employee who will do his job efficiently in the easiest and fastest way” . I believe that this is the meaning hidden in the phrase "I will always look for a lazy person for work" . The fact is that only a smart, creative and creative employee will constantly look for the best ways to solve the tasks.

      What does this mean for the employer? This means that the team will have someone with whom it is possible and necessary to create something new in the market of products and services, to be the first and unique in the market. It is this uniqueness and novelty that will ensure a firm and stable position for the company and business in the current competitive environment. nine0003

      If we draw an analogy with sports, for example, football, which players are now in the highest price? Those who know how and know how to score the maximum number of goals in the minimum time. What does this mean in the depth of unpacking? This means that the player-athlete has the knowledge, skills and talents, abilities and ability to play the game effectively and as efficiently as possible. We need strategic intuition, the ability to organize well-coordinated interaction of all players on the team, maximum involvement in the game and focus on the result. nine0003

      Such people are very effective as a team captain, they are listened to and respected by teammates, they are trusted by the coaches and club owners. The more beautiful, spectacular and spectacular the team and each player individually plays, the more expensive the tickets for this game are and the more spectators are eager to buy tickets. This means that the team is in the top, among the leaders of their city, region, country, and the world as a whole. Can you imagine how many positive emotions this team can give to its fans?

      Business language:

      • Colleagues on the team - employees of the department, the staff of the company.
      • Captain - head of department or top manager.
      • Trainer - Operations Director.
      • The owner of the club is the owner of the business.
      • Well, and the spectators are the fans who buy tickets and come to the match - leads, customers, buyers of the company's service or product.

      A lazy person is a person who chooses the least resistance

      Elena Agafonova, career change coach, expert

      Here you need to define the concept of "lazy". What is meant? A goofy slacker, or just a calm, slow-moving employee? I would prefer a slightly different formulation of "lazy" in the context of people's relationships at work, in business: "the person who chooses the least resistance" .

      Speaking in this paradigm, in my experience, people who act according to the 80/20 principle - slow and thoughtful, conserve both their own and the company's resources, while doing the few really important actions to get the maximum result - are many times superior those who give the impression of violent, but low-efficiency activity. At first glance, the latter are more noticeable, as they are terribly active and make a lot of noise. However, upon closer examination, their activity often does not bring the expected results, or the company gets it at the expense of high risks and costs. nine0003

      Is it worth recruiting such employees on purpose? Depends on the intention of the company and the outlook on life of its owner and / or owner. If the strategy of "better less, but more" is close to the company, such "lazy" employees will be important in all positions without exception. If the owners adhere to other principles, then truly effective employees will most likely not be welcome there.

      The 80/20 principle is close primarily to entrepreneurs and their start-ups. In the early stages, the business is "taken out" by such people. Later, when the company gets bigger and “calms down”, it seems to the management that efficient “lazy” ones can be dangerous. They do not like routine, they quietly sabotage the execution of tasks that are unnecessary from their point of view, and either “negatively” influence the atmosphere among the active majority, or leave themselves. Yes, they are generally rare birds! nine0003

      Therefore, in large companies, such people are found only in very high positions, where they can delegate inefficient work to a large mass of ordinary active performers, while they themselves prefer to deal with a few really effective tasks.

      A lazy person is one who does not want to do meaningless work

      Evgeny Pugachev, research engineer, Tomsk Polytechnic University, expert

      I propose to separate two concepts:

      1. A lazy person is one who does not want to do anything;
      2. A lazy person is one who does not want to do meaningless work.

      Obviously, Bill Gates had in mind the second type of lazy people.

      I myself belong to the second type and I select the same employees for myself.

      • Instead of copying data from one table to another for half a day, I will write a simple macro or sheet with Excel formulas and automate this process.
      • Instead of digging a trench, I will earn money and pay it to someone who digs faster and better than me, because my hour costs twice as much as a trencher's hour.
      • Instead of opening the file every day and watching the progress of the chart, I'll hang the chart on the wall and pencil in the information as it comes in. Meetings will also be held near this schedule and standing.

      If my employee starts complaining that he doesn't have time to do something, I give him a day off on the condition that he will find a way to optimize his work during that day and tell others about this method. nine0003

      Such laziness greatly saves resources and frees up time for life.

      How to test an employee for "good laziness"

      Ekaterina Eremina, head of development unit (Kokoc Group)

      It is important to define the terminology. The concepts of "work well" and "work hard" are not identical. The latter often refers to the process, not the result. I distinguish between the concepts of "good laziness" and "bad laziness".

      From the perspective of management, "good laziness" has something in common with a number of competencies: the ability to delegate routine, to abandon non-urgent unimportant tasks in favor of strategic ones, and the optimization of business processes. From the position of the developer, “good laziness” is the desire to automate processes and do as little as possible “by hand”. nine0003

      “Bad laziness” is about procrastination and unwillingness to complete tasks for various reasons: the wrong area, burnout, lack of quality rest, the need to change jobs.

      I deliberately hired a “good laziness” specialist for the position of DevOps engineer, where automatic code delivery methods, containerization, system failure notification tools, scheduled backups, etc. are the highest aerobatics. In the process of working with novice developers, I practice setting them routine "copy-paste" tasks to see if the programmer writes an automated script or does everything manually. nine0003

      The first option became a marker for promotion. As for “bad laziness”, there is no universal recipe. Depending on the context, she sent me on vacation, changed work tasks, ended cooperation, changed work KPIs.

      When “laziness” can be beneficial

      Ekaterina Movsesyan, General Director of KROS

      The word “lazy” in the context of personnel can have two main meanings. In the first case, a “lazy employee” will mean a person prone to procrastination and ineffective, in the second, a person who seeks to optimize processes because he does not want to perform unnecessary actions. Presumably, Bill Gates had in mind just employees of the second type. nine0003

      People who specialize in process optimization are typically sought after for project managers and similar positions. These are positions where it is important to minimize time and other costs for solving each specific task, without compromising business and product quality. But in general, this is a useful quality for both the manager, who is responsible for the overall effectiveness of the organization, and for the line staff, who can see how to optimize their area of ​​work.

      If your employee is prone to procrastination, then further actions depend on his qualifications. If this is a valuable expert, then his manager usually sets more control points to be sure that the task will be completed on time. Such employees require more control, and the employer puts up with this as long as the value of the employee's expertise for the company is higher than the cost of monitoring him. nine0003

      “Laziness” can indeed be beneficial, but this process requires very clear moderation. Much depends on the corporate culture and mentality.

      What type of laziness suits your company?

      Arkady Bondar, psychologist, coach, general director of the NLP Institute in St. Petersburg

      First of all, it's worth understanding what a "lazy employee" is. Usually such a label is attached to someone who:

      • Does something slower than others (time). nine0039
      • Does less than others (quantitative results).
      • Looking for the simplest solutions (this is where the range appears: from formal execution to ingenious and innovative).
      • Avoids work (attitude towards work).
      • Does not take responsibility (hides behind other employees, for circumstances).

      It makes sense to divide:

      • Laziness as a personality trait of a person, which manifests itself in passivity.
      • Laziness as a situational psychological loss of a person who may be torn apart by negative experiences.
      • Laziness as a manifestation of the fact that a person is out of place. He did not fit into the team, the tasks are not interesting, he is not satisfied with working conditions and / or remuneration. This can manifest itself either through conflicts or as apathy.
      • Laziness as an unwillingness to waste time and energy on "inefficient, unnecessary" work.

      Often the differences are not so obvious, but they are there. And then it is important for the leader to make a correct assessment in order to find their place for each “lazy” person or refuse to continue cooperation. In general, "lazy" employees are well suited for those tasks where payment is based on the time actually worked. Where human presence is required. He doesn’t really solve anything, he just needs to be in a certain place and perform understandable tasks. If you create more comfortable working conditions for him and create a sense of his significance, then you will get a wonderful employee. nine0003

      To assess whether you will encounter a type of laziness that does not suit you, pay attention to 5 parameters.

      1. The level of the general physical tone of a person , the level of vital energy, emotional background. Weakened, lethargic, bored, or cheerful, active, fit.
      2. Typical human lifestyle. How active, how time is organized, frequency of changes. Are there any activities in life: sports, study, travel, how much time is valued. Are there obligations: children, parents, pets, cottage. nine0039
      3. Thinking. How characteristic of a person is depreciation, criticism, accusation against other people. dissatisfaction with their position. The position of an observer, not a participant in the implementation process. The presence of a large number of unrealized plans. Postponing to a later date, until better times. Or - clear goals, objectivity of judgments, understanding of one's own responsibility for one's life and the life of one's loved ones.
      4. Real experience of overcoming and achieving. nine0023 Is there a formed habit of applying efforts: physical (part-time jobs), intellectual (mastering new knowledge), social (establishing new contacts). The presence of specific motor skills that required time and effort.
      5. Attitude towards work. Work as a necessity, either as an integral part of life, or as self-realization.
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