Taking the easy way out takes longer because you never actually get out. The only thing you ever get out of is the discomfort or the tension that would help you grow.
Taking the easy way out looks like agreeing when you don’t really agree, holding back when you have something important to say because you are either scared or because you are being stingy and resentful, or avoiding a confronting conversation because you aren’t willing to hold space for someone else’s reaction. It could look like a whole lot of other things as well.
Taking the easy way out will only allow for momentary relief from discomfort. However, because the easy way out is never actually the way out, the easy way out will keep you stuck where you are forever because. This is because taking the easy way out is a habit that will stick with you until you are willing to do the work and break it and move through the challenges instead of away. No matter how many great things happen to you, or how many incredible opportunities come your way, or how many wonderful things you learn, you will never be able to grow if you continue to look for the easy way out.
The easy way out makes everything take longer, and possibly even forever. Creating the habit of moving straight into the challenges that face you is the way to make your life actually easier. In the long run, the challenging route is the fastest route and the easy way out is a scam.