Working Hard Is Required to Do Great Work

Although it sounds like a truism, working hard is required to do great work. In practice, it is difficult to apply because one must recognize the quality of the work they are doing, the effort they are putting in, and being honest with oneself about the results they are getting.

In Paul Graham’s essay How to work hard, he argues that talent only gets you so far and that hard work is almost always required. However, personal interest in what you are working on makes it feel less like hard work and is a good way to guage whether or not you are working on something important.

(The comments in the HN thread follow a typical Contrarian dynamic—criticism of the essay that privilege is the primary way to achieve an outsized outcome and those arguing that they earned what they achieved because they worked hard and got lucky.)

See also: