Have you been conditioned to think you need to hustle to grow your business?
“Hustle til’ you make it” (And destroy all your relationships or die in the process)
Hustle has become the new cool.
I read a post just the other day where a newbie to business proudly posted
“I have not done my hair in over a month and instead wear a hat so I can hustle longer. What time-saving tips do you have?”
Was he being serious? I have no idea, but I’d like to bet there was truth behind it.
The truth is you do have to work hard, especially in the early stages of start-up.
But there’s a difference between hard work and hustle.
Hustle comes from a place of scarcity.
You use words like:
“I should” “I need to” “I have to” Instead of “I want to”
The stakes are high, so you’re always in a heightened emotional state.
You create a place of lack and take the fun out of the process. The hustle culture is creating a world of overwhelm and burnout,
And here are 5 reasons why it will burn you down…
1. Your brain is never in flow
A hustle mind is not a strategic or creative mind. Hustle makes you hurried and forceful. Jumping from one task to the next with no intention other than ’to get more done’ but in the process, never achieving one thing with excellence.
Do you really want your customers and clients to think of you as a hustler?
2. You don’t know when to stop
9pm, 10pm, 11pm? Before you know it, you’re reluctantly closing the laptop, still not satisfied with your day’s contribution, and heading to bed in a high emotional state.
I talk about this a lot, but neuroplasticity (the ability for your brain to change) only happens in deep rest, i.e., restful sleep.
So if you’re heading to bed highly emotional and still switched on, you’re missing out on your superpower.
Sleep is king!
3. You don’t know how to take time out
Instead, you’re overthrown with guilt for not working and find yourself sneaking in five minutes here and five minutes there when you think ‘no one will notice.’
(Psst! people notice)
4. You don’t have boundaries
Your work hustle and personal life blend into one. You have no idea where one starts and the other ends. Your business brain is never fully switched off. You’ve lost control.
5. The tiredness and exhaustion become your badge of honour
I wore this badge for many years because I was influenced by those who rallied for hustle. I believed if I wasn’t 10Xing my hustle game, I wasn’t playing big enough.
Here’s the thing. This mentality didn’t just affect my health. It almost ruined my relationships with my family. Trust me when I say it’s not honourable. No one wants to be around an overtired hustler who can’t switch off from ‘business mode.’
There’s a line between the hustle and hard work. Both require sacrifice and commitment.
Both are goal orientated. The difference is in the state of being and how you approach your work.
A hustler is always in a high emotional state, anxious, aggressive, rushed. The hustler is so busy hustling that self-care goes out the window.
Workouts get missed, and meals are forgotten. I’ve even heard the phrase,
“Sleeping is cheating”
Those who are successful are critical thinkers. Critical thinking does not happen in a place of high emotion.
In contrast, hard work is strategic and purposeful. Think of the athlete heading for the Olympics with gold in mind. It takes four years to prepare for the event. Imagine if, for four of those years the athlete was in a state of hustle, sneaking in extra workouts and neglecting sleep.
No, the athlete is disciplined in the process. The athlete works hard in training.
She gives her all to each session and shows up at her best. But she’s smart and recovers hard with rest and play. She doesn’t possess a hustle mindset; she is fully in control of her emotional state. The athlete knows its quality above quantity, so she remains patient and committed.
Hard work is a state of mind committed to the process, not just the result. Adopt an athlete mindset and lose the hustle.
Thank you for reading,
I hope this provided awareness of what I see as a growing concern within the entrepreneurial world.
Author: Keir Wotherspoon – High Performance Coach
We would like to share our appreciation to Keir Wotherspoon for his work. Please help us by sharing his blog to all those you believe would benefit from these insightful words.
To understand what drives us to continue doing something, including actions that we would like to stop doing, it is important to understand that our brains respond to stimuli and when we are talking about addictive behaviour, we are referring to the way our brains are responding to certain stimuli. So, If you want to change a response, such as reaching for the biscuits whenever you feel upset, for example, it is necessary to consciously develop a new reaction to the feeling of being upset.
To do this effectively and meaningfully it is important to understand how our neural pathways are created in the brain; if a person behaves or responds to certain situations, emotions or events in the same manner over a long period of time, eventually that person builds a neural pathway so that when the activating stimulation presents itself again, the brain automatically returns to that response, because this is now an unconscious reaction. This is how behaviour is formed and this is how addiction is formed.
It is also important to understand that we are dealing with very strong neural connections that formed in the brain over a long period of time. That’s why it seems so difficult to change things about ourselves. The stronger the neural connections, the harder it will be to create new ones that are strong enough to override the old ones. The good news however, is that the brain is malleable and can be changed. This is known as neuroplasticity which sounds more sinister than it is.
As humans, we have the unique ability to stand back and observe what is happening in our personal lives. We are not our emotions, we are not our thoughts and we are not our behaviours. We have emotions, we have thoughts, and we have behaviours and what’s more, we can actually stop to observe each of these within us.
Likewise, we are not addiction. We can have an addiction and we have the ability to observe an addiction. Once we acknowledge this and believe we have the power to consciously rewire our brain, we can begin noticing our triggers. We can identify our compulsions and urges and we can learn to override these urges by making alternative choices and taking different actions or responses to them.
There are generally four components of our addictions; doing, thinking, feeling and physiology.
DOING This is the action you physically perform, such as opening the biscuit tin.
THINKING These are the thoughts we have to justify our behaviour, such as “I have worked really hard today, I deserve these biscuits” or “I’ve eaten five already, one or two more won’t make a difference” or “I’ll run longer on the treadmill tomorrow to burn them off.”
FEELING This is the emotion we get as a result of the thoughts we have just had to justify the ‘doing’. In the case above, you might feel happy or excited after having convinced yourself that what you’re about to do is okay and justified.
PHYSIOLOGY This is the release of neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin. These neurochemicals are released as a consequence of the behaviour we just engaged in.
These neurotransmitters create a feeling of pleasure and gratification but we eventually build up a tolerance for them and therefore require more and more extreme behaviour to get the same neurochemical response. To explain, this means that, whereas 5 biscuits may have satisfied you enough last week, as your tolerance levels to the neurotransmitters increase, this week you may require 8 biscuits to experience the same feeling of pleasure and gratification. The more you do this, the more that neural pathway is strengthened and the stronger this pattern of behaviour becomes.
So how do we break this cycle? Most importantly it is necessary for you to acknowledge that a behaviour change is required and then it is important for you to make the decision to want to change this behaviour. For those of you who follow our blogs, you would have already seen our article on ‘6 Steps on How Create Real Change’
In acknowledging your desire to make a change, it is now important to change the components referred to above, that create the addiction. The first of which and the key element to this is to change the ‘doing’ component. If you are able to change the ‘doing’ such as opening the tin of biscuits, we subsequently change the thinking, feeling, and physiological components too. In order to do this however, it is important to be able to observe the thoughts and emotions that lead to the ‘doing’ aspect in the first place. Without this awareness, we won’t know when to change the ‘doing’ component.
Once you have recognised that when you are sad, you generally reach for the biscuits you can then become aware enough to look out for this trigger and your response to it. For example, if something happens and you suddenly feel sad, try to stand back and observe that emotion. Consider and examine it. Then instead of reaching for the biscuits, be deliberate in choosing a different reaction instead such as going for a walk or calling a friend for a chat. Making yourself a drink or turning to a calming App on your phone to use. If you change the ‘doing’ component, you will consequently change the ‘thinking’ ‘feeling’ and ‘physiological’ components, too.
By continuing to make these conscious decisions you will over time, change your neural pathways and before you realise it, a new habit is formed.
This is no easy task and it requires you to remain focused and to make conscious decisions, every day. The longer you do this, the easier it will become as new habits are formed, which in turn will become your unconscious patterns of behaviour.
It takes a lot of effort to change yourself, but once you understand that you can literally train your brain to react differently you can change your neurochemical makeup and new pathways can be created until they become automatic. In that moment after you have the urge to open the biscuits and right before that behaviour is initiated, you have the ability to redirect your attention and choose a different behaviour. It is a good idea to choose ahead of time what that reaction will be so that you are prepared when the moment arrives and choose a behaviour that is realistic for you to do in that moment. The more you do this, the more you strengthen the new neural pathways and the more the old ones weaken.
Every time you practice this new behaviour, you are giving your mind the awareness of the new experience and the old pathways leading to your previous, self-destructive behaviour are diminishing.
It is not easy, it can be frustrating and it does take time so it is fundamentally important for you to be patient, persevere and most importantly, be kind to yourself.
We all know that December brings Christmas parties, family gatherings, drinks and get-togethers with friends. Not to mention a kitchen-full of tempting Christmas goodies just waiting to be picked at as you kick back on the couch with a festive film.
It’s a wonderful time for having fun and catching up with friends and family but unfortunately, it’s usually not the best time for those of you working towards a fitness goal and especially difficult for those of you aiming to drop some body fat.
It is easy to trick yourself into believing that second mince pie won’t make a difference and that third helping of Christmas cake won’t really have an impact on your goals. The problem is, eating in this way every day over a period of two, three or maybe even four weeks will most definitely go against your efforts in losing body fat. Especially when accompanied by alcohol, reduced physical activity and a broken sleep pattern.
It is also very easy to make promises to yourself. While you might think you’ll lose those festive pounds as soon as Christmas is over, it doesn’t always happen that easily for the most. Telling yourself that you will revert to wholesome foods straight after Christmas and start training every day as soon as January arrives, is not often followed through. This false sense of comfort that feels so real at the time, is enough to give you the false confidence to believe that what you are doing will not hinder you. However, many people never go on to lose their Christmas weight gain and even for those who do, it can be a slow, frustrating journey back that takes goal setting and planning.
The good news is that staying healthy over Christmas is possible and you are able to avoid gaining excess weight and still enjoy the holiday season, so you can start the new year feeling great
The problem with letting go of all your efforts and self-care over the Christmas weeks doesn’t simply stop with excess body weight. The reduced physical activity, increase in calories, higher levels of alcohol intake and less sleep all have a huge impact on our state of mind and many people experience a downward turn in their mental health post-Christmas. The festive party season often leaves people feeling exhausted, overweight and unmotivated. This can be avoided and for your own physical, mental and emotional health, it is well-worth remaining mindful of how much you eat and how much you exercise over the Christmas period. Perhaps that extra festive cocktail and ‘must-have’ chocolate can wait for another day after-all?
Here are our top five tips to help you have fun at Christmas without hampering your body goals and jeopardising your mental state.
1. Accept that not every occasion is a ‘special occasion’ that requires a ‘special indulgence‘
Friday is not a special occasion. Neither is Saturday and Sunday is not simply the ‘recovery’ day. Much the same, not every day in December is Christmas day.
We all like to treat ourselves and it is very important to do so but where does it say that to treat ourselves is to indulge in something that will knowingly do us harm and result in us feeling bad about ourselves.
Try to find something that you enjoy doing over the festive period that you do not get the time to do ordinarily and that does not involve food or alcohol.
It is hard to avoid that December is typically party season and for many this does mean a series of events surrounded by indulgent foods and festive drinks. This is a perfect time to remind yourself of your goals and to keep focused. Your mind set will be the key to success over the festive weeks and you are the only person who can decide what you do or don’t do, eat or don’t eat, drink or don’t drink. This will be the perfect time to add a measure of restraint and decide, ahead of time, when and where you are going to indulge and when you are going to remain focused on your own goals.
2. Set realistic goals over Christmas
The festive season might not be the best time to aim for your best weight loss result of the year and with some gyms and fitness centres running reduced opening hours over Christmas, your fitness routine can be easily disrupted. It is important to have goals to aim towards and this is true throughout the year but understanding that the Christmas period can be a little unpredictable, for all the reasons discussed above, it would be advisable to keep your goals realistic over this time.
If you have set yourself a goal of going to the gym at 5.30am every morning and relying on nothing but a smoothie to see you through each day in a week where you have 5 Christmas lunches and 14 parties to attend, you will find yourself burning out very quickly. An unrealistic goal is very hard to achieve and when you see yourself falling short of your target, it is often followed by feelings of disheartenment. This in turn leads to you feeling unmotivated and all too often, this leads to your overall goal be pushed aside altogether with a feeling of failure and frustration. Before you know it, you are on your fourth sitting at the cheeseboard washing it down with your fifth glass of your favourite festive tipple.
Setting yourself realistic health goals to see you through the party season will be far more beneficial overall. Maybe your goals for December could be to achieve a minimum number of workouts each week, at any point in the day; spoiler alert, training at 3pm will have the same effect on your body and wellbeing as training as 6am, but not everyone in the ‘fitness’ industry wants you to believe that. When it comes to food and drink, if you go to a party with the expectation of not eating or drinking anything at all, you could find yourself very disappointed in your own efforts as you wake up the next morning hungover and bloated from ‘just one more’ Christmas chocolate. Perhaps instead, before you go, you can decide on a maximum number of drinks you will have and plan your food throughout the day so that you do not arrive at the party too hungry.
3. Stay hydrated
There are so many benefits to drinking water; it helps to keep you focused, it helps with healthy skin, hair and nails, it helps to oxygenate your blood, it helps to maximise your physical performance, it helps your energy levels and brain function and it is worth noting that if you allow yourself to get too-thirsty, your brain will send signals for water that we can often mistake for hunger. This means that, if surrounded by the usual Christmas goodies, you will be more likely to reach for all the extra treats on offer at this time of year.
By keeping yourself sufficiently hydrated will not only benefit you overall, it will also help your body flush out any extra toxins from all that festive fun.
4. Get enough sleep during the silly season
Sleep is massively under-rated at the best of times. Sleep plays a fundamental part in our well-being for so many reasons. It is well-known that a lack of sleep can cause feelings of irritableness and can make it harder for you to work at your best and to think clearly. However, sleep deprivation can be far more serious than that; after just a couple of sleepless nights, the mental effects can become more severe as your brain becomes foggier while your body’s chemical and hormone levels become unbalanced, leading to low moods and even depression and anxiety in extreme cases.
Sleep also boosts your immunity, meaning that when you are getting enough sleep, you are less likely to feel ill.
A little less known reaction is that sleeping less can lead to weight gain. If your body is not getting the rest and recovery it requires while you are sleeping, it becomes stressed which produces increased levels of cortisol. This causes your body to temporarily slow down your metabolism, whilst at the same time causes your body to call out for high-fat and sugary foods, which is what you feel as cravings when you are tired. If that wasn’t enough, a lack of sleep also reduces levels of leptin, which is the hormone that tells the brain you are full-up and increases levels of ghrelin which is the hormone that tells the brain you are hungry. Not an ideal loop to be stuck in when your goal is to lose body fat and be fitter and healthier. For those of you who have read LIFE Fit The Process, you will already know the importance of leptin. And for those of you who have not yet read this book, it is available on Amazon.
So, throughout the party season, if you plan on performing at your best, looking your best and continuing after Christmas at your best, it would be a very good idea to prioritise your sleep.
5. Move every day
Moving your body every day is fundamentally important not just for your physical fitness but for your mental and emotional wellbeing too. Physical activity means many different things to different people. Whether you go to a gym, workout at home, jump in the saddle and cycle, go for a long walk, swim, dance or skip, whatever it is you do, keep doing it. Physical fitness is not an 11-months of the year option. For our over-all wellbeing, doing something to get your body moving will have a massively positive effect on your overall mindset.
Even if you do not continue with your normal fitness routine over the Christmas period, do something, anything that will prevent you from becoming completely sedentary during the festivities. This will not only help lift your mood but it will also help to ease you into January and the fourth coming months with the right mindset, meaning you will be more-likely to slip back into your fitness routine more easily and make the most of the year with the continuation of creating the best you, yet.
Manage Cookie Consent
To provide the best experiences, we use technologies like cookies to store and/or access device information. Consenting to these technologies will allow us to process data such as browsing behaviour or unique IDs on this site. Not consenting or withdrawing consent, may adversely affect certain features and functions.
The technical storage or access is strictly necessary for the legitimate purpose of enabling the use of a specific service explicitly requested by the subscriber or user, or for the sole purpose of carrying out the transmission of a communication over an electronic communications network.
The technical storage or access is necessary for the legitimate purpose of storing preferences that are not requested by the subscriber or user.
The technical storage or access that is used exclusively for statistical purposes.The technical storage or access that is used exclusively for anonymous statistical purposes. Without a subpoena, voluntary compliance on the part of your Internet Service Provider, or additional records from a third party, information stored or retrieved for this purpose alone cannot usually be used to identify you.
The technical storage or access is required to create user profiles to send advertising, or to track the user on a website or across several websites for similar marketing purposes.