the line of least resistance


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the line of least resistance

The thing, option, or course of action that is easiest to do; that which avoids confrontation, difficulty, awkwardness, or tension. Let's not try to innovate this time—just take the line of least resistance so we can get the job done on time. You're never going to be respected by your boss if you choose the line of least resistance every time he asks you to do something you don't want to do.
See also: least, line, of, resistance

line of least resistance

the course of action that will cause least trouble or effort. Jane won't stand up for her rights. She always takes the line of least resistance. Joan never states her point of view. She takes the line of least resistance and agrees with everyone else.
See also: least, line, of, resistance

least resistance, line of

Also, path of least resistance. The easiest method, way, or course of action. For example, He tends to do what most people seem to want, taking the line of least resistance. This term employs resistance in the sense of "the physical opposition of one thing or force to another," a usage dating from the early 1600s. It has been used figuratively since about 1900.
See also: least, line, of

the line (or path) of least resistance

an option which avoids difficulty or unpleasantness; the easiest course of action.
See also: least, line, of, resistance

(choose, follow, take, etc.) the line of least reˈsistance

(to choose, etc.) the easiest way of doing something: You’ll never get anywhere in life if you always take the line of least resistance.
See also: least, line, of, resistance
References in periodicals archive ?
Until now you've taken the line of least resistance but understandably you don't want to be forced into anything.
When the time came for me to think of some kind of career, I followed the line of least resistance and pleased my grandmother by deciding to apply for a place at a teacher training college.
In hindsight, it has always been proven true that it was important and right for the Frankfurt Book Fair to provide a driving force and not to take the line of least resistance," the fair's spokesman Thomas Minkus said.
However, this "ingenious" idea was voiced by a government official and unfortunately the government and the justice minister following again the line of least resistance did not nothing to distance themselves from this unseen folly.
To Greece's rulers, the line of least resistance is often to do nothing, turning a blind eye to police corruption, or letting public servants pad out their salaries by taking money on the side.
Surrounded by such weak hearts, ministers can find many a reason to take the line of least resistance and channel their efforts to the South-East, where Parliamentary marginals crowd together and the civil servants who advise them just happen to reside.
There is nothing in the world quite so comforting to our FC as sliding down the line of least resistance into the welcoming arms of the soft option.