Raise your hand if you’ve been given the career advice that you need to hustle. But what exactly is that? Here is what every 20-something needs to know about hustling.
There’s no greater feeling than landing your dream job, and it feels even more amazing when it happens in your 20s. All the late nights, hoping and goal setting has totally paid off and now you’re doing exactly what you want. In other words, you’re hustling. But do you even know what that truly means?
We hear so much about hustling on a daily basis. We read interviews with successful women who praise their own work ethic and quotes on Instagram like “good things come to those who hustle,” but it’s time to figure out what this trending word is all about.
Here’s what every 20-something needs to know about hustling. Don’t be afraid: this is the greatest thing you can do for your career.
There’s literally no way to succeed without putting your blood, sweat, and tears into it—and that basically means that you have to hustle. If you want to spend your entire workday on Facebook, catching up with your friends from college, that’s cool. That just means that you won’t get that raise, promotion or awesome new job.
In contrast, if you work a typical 40-hour week and spend some weekends getting ahead, that’s probably going to be the better choice. There’s no point whining about how you want to enjoy your Sunday. Watching Netflix and eating potato chips isn’t going to get you where you want to be, is it?
You have probably heard of work-life balance already as it’s a popular idea. People love to debate whether or not this is even possible, and the very fact that this term even exists proves that people are worried about working too much.
The truth, though, is that hard work is fun—seriously. When you can put in the long hours, something kind of magical happens. You see awesome results, you’re extremely productive and you look forward to going to work the next day—even if you’re already working a 12-hour day.
Here’s the ultimate thing to remember about hustling: if you hustle, you will love it. You will love your job. You will love every day of your life. If you don’t feel that way, you need to find a new career asap.
As a kid, you think that when you’re a grown-up, you’re going to live for weekends, Christmas and vacations. When you hustle, you realize that it’s not a negative thing but actually completely positive.
You’re working hard to get somewhere. You want to get promoted in your job, or keep growing your freelance business if you work for yourself. You appreciate the fact that you’re working this much and this hard because this is what you always wanted for yourself.
Monday is a complicated day of the week. Some people fear it and hate it. Just take a look at your Facebook or Instagram feed and you’ll see how true this is. However, there are people who aren’t afraid of Monday at all. In fact, they adore it and even look forward to it. When Monday comes, they’re ready, sitting at their desks with their steaming cups of coffee and organized notebooks.
When you can embrace the hustle, you will feel great about Monday mornings. They will be a fresh start for you and a chance to do even better things. The Monday blues will be a thing of the past. Once you stop hating this day of the week, you’re going to be much more productive, and that’s what hustling is really all about.
The thing about hustling is that you’re going to feel completely exhausted at times. Your eyes will be sore from staring at your computer screen, your head will hurt from all the ideas spinning around and you’ll feel like you haven’t had a break in ages.
It’s okay to get burnt out sometimes. It’s okay to get tired. This doesn’t make you a failure—it just makes you human. If you think that successful people never take a night off, you’re wrong. They absolutely do. It’s all about recharging your batteries so that you can get right back to work in the morning.
Working so much that you feel weak when you have to admit that you need a night off is the worst idea ever. Don’t be that person.
Just because you’re going to work hard doesn’t mean that you have to go crazy. You don’t need to work from 6 a.m. until midnight seven days a week. That’s definitely not sustainable.
Yes, you can take weekends off. Yes, you can chill out on the couch in the evenings and watch The Real Housewives. Yes, you can take vacations. Just not all the time. If you rest and relax more than you work, then you’re not hustling at all—and you’re not really going to get anywhere.
So, you can definitely take some weekends off and enjoy your free time. You just have to find a balance of resting a bit every week and continuing to go after your dreams. It’s a tricky balance, sure, and it won’t be perfect, but it is going to be rewarding, and that’s really all you can ask for, right?
Hustling isn’t going to go anywhere anytime soon, so if you have career dreams and goals, you definitely want to find your own version of hustle and go for it. Do you define yourself as a hustler? What has hard work taught you? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
Aya Tsintziras is a freelance lifestyle writer and editor. She loves coffee, barre classes, 90s television and pop culture. She is a food blogger at A Healthy Story and shares gluten-free, dairy-free recipes and personal stories.
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