September 19, 2017
Have you realized that hardly anyone is in only human resources anymore? Or only accounting? The friendly “so what do you do for a living” sends people into a nervous effort to present their elevator pitch in only a few sentences. More often than not, I meet people who say, I’m a marketing manager at an agency downtown, but my passion is graphic design. Or I teach high school science, but on the weekends, I catch up on orders from my Etsy shop.
People have switched the “work to live” mentality for one that adopts the idea that life is too short to stay at a job that is not your passion. This leads to working in the evenings, weekends, and early mornings at the infamous “side-hustle” all while trying to balance a nine-to-five. This is why catchy terms like girl boss, creative tribe, and hustle have taken over the internet, one hashtag at a time.
There is no denying that working in a job that fulfills your passion is undoubtedly a great step toward a happier life, but I believe the “hustle” mentality can be just as detrimental as working in a job you hate. It’s one of those words that just rubs me the wrong way, and here’s why.
When we adopt the idea that we must do it all just to be fulfilled, we deny the importance of self-care. As much as the entrepreneurial movement is trending, so is the idea that if we don’t take moments to rest and catch a breath, then burn-out is inevitable. To transform any passion into a sustainable hobby, or even business, it is absolutely vital to take regular time to care for your mental and physical health, relationships, and well, the rest of your life.
The more I have bought into the idea of slow living, the more I believe in the power of it. The more I believe in the importance of fighting for it. Most of the week, I am working from home, pushing the limits of how many hours I should work a day, trying to convince myself that coffee is a food group. But if that is what my life looked like every day, I have full confidence that I would see my relationships suffering, my mental health getting ugly, and my overall quality of life not reaching the level I am striving for. I still allow myself mornings to make pancakes in my pajamas, daily walks listening to my audiobook, and happy hour with my best gals. It’s these little things that allow me to be filled up. They give me the fuel I need to do my best work, and hustle in a healthy way.
So next time, you see the word hustle and feel like you are about to lose it, remember that life is about balance. It’s not all punching the clock, and it’s not all pancakes in pajamas. Find your rhythm, value your relationships, work hard, and take care of yourself. You deserve it.
Image via Badlands