Welcome to The Anti Hustle… a place to slow down so you can speed (and scale) up.
I recently reached out to many of those I know, and asked them to share a single Tip / Tactic / Tool / Nugget of Wisdom that has helped them escape “The Hustle”.
Because although we’re spoon-fed Hustle Porn each day, those you admire DO NOT Hustle n’ Grind 😉
You’ll see for yourself below, as I scatter their Tips and Tricks throughout this article…
Around my own thoughts of why you should #FucktheHustle & embrace the Anti Hustle instead.
We’ve been fed a lie for too long.
So let’s debunk some myths!
And create a few new ones along the way…
(starting with this gem sure to trigger Gary V himself)
THOSE WHO HUSTLE ARE THE LAZIEST PEOPLE OF ALL!
Wait… what? Did you read that right?
Those who hustle hard — those who work long into the night, push the limits and commit to their work 24/7 — are lazy? No, that cannot be right. Such folk are the hardest workers amongst us… right?
No! No they are not.
Because people who throw themselves into the “hustle” often hide from:
- The work they NEED to do.
- The pain they are really FEELING.
- The root cause of their biggest PROBLEM.
- The LIMITING BELIEFS that haunt them.
Today, we’re fed a constant stream of “Hustle Porn” every single day. Edited stories of success from people who supposedly have it figured out.
You know it well, I’m sure.
Maybe you’ve felt it already today…
As you scroll through Facebook and see those you admire sharing great content. You wonder how they do it all, and how they find the time? What do they have that you don’t?
Do they want it more than you? Are they more committed?
How about on Instagram, the Mecca of Hustle Porn.
Images of beautiful beaches and happy faces, working on their business as they travel the globe. Or the fit and healthy bodies, which look WAY better than yours when you stare in the mirror.
- How do they do it?
- How are they so committed?
- How are they so amazing?
Whereas me… why can’t I be like them?
The one thing I do consistently on a month to month basis is BATCH. I have 1 day per month dedicated to all my Entrepreneurs on Fire interviews. I have 1 day per month dedicated to interviews on other shows. This Batching of my content production gives me the time and space to reflect upon my life and business, and keep moving in the right direction.
I try not to reflect on the big picture of my business too frequently, because I’ve seen in many of my executive coaching clients that it leads them to restlessness and changing focus too often (because they don’t see results as quickly as they want — Results never come as quickly as you want). Instead, I make a point of creating six month goals for myself and checking back at the start of the year and the midway point to reflect on, or update, them. I try to spend most of my time in execution mode because it takes a long time for your actions to bear fruit and you need to stick with it until they do.
The best piece of advice I can give that always helps me to improve my life and business is don’t keep on doing the same things and expecting different results….. I always come back to this and it applies in all areas of my life i.e. relationships, health, business you name it. It’s always important to take a step back and think is this currently working for me? Am I achieving the results that I want and if not what can I change to try and get a different result? That is where personal growth is, failing, getting up again, reassessing and making changes.
Each Sunday my partner and I do our Life Pilot reflections. We take off to a cafe or on a walk in the park (or by the river and reflect on our week). We talk through our roses, thorns and bananas, and then look at our weekly goals and see how we went, before discussing what we’d love for the week ahead. We’ve been doing this for 2 years as part of our Life Pilot methodology and it’s been transformative.
Maybe you’ve already compared yourself to someone else today. Maybe that inner voice has spoken, telling you how you’ll never have what they have. Maybe you feel the doubt in the pit of your stomach. Maybe you looked in the mirror this morning, and wanted to cry…
This is why I hate the Hustle.
This is why I say #FucktheHustle (and embrace the anti hustle lifestyle)
Because it’s this hustle centric message that fuels so much:
- Self doubt
- Comparison to others
- Neglect of one’s body.
- Neglect of your MIND.
Mental health among entrepreneurs is a serious problem that too few talk about.
Because everyone you admire seems to have it “figured out”.
But here’s the reality… they are as fucked up and as human as you and me.
The stories we see are edited to share only what the other person wants to share.
Not because they are out to trick you (although some people are, for sure).
No. they share an edited version of their story because they too are scared.
- They too compare themselves to someone else.
- They too are haunted by limiting beliefs and fear.
- They too are affected by society’s obsession toward success.
- They too, like YOU… are human.
I meditate every day. Since I have A.D.D. I can get distracted very easily, especially for my default mode of helping everyone else out and avoiding the “harder” work. Meditating for about 20 minutes then writing my plan for the day based on the goals and week plan are crucial. In fact, even my kids notice my short attention span (and probably shorter temper!) on the days I don’t meditate, so it’s a must for me!
I give myself 20 minutes a day to just sit and think: there’s no goal beyond that, and no environmental or ritual requirements like poses or music or chanting or whatnot. Letting my brain unspool in this unguided way allows me to address problems before they become problems, reflect on things beyond to-do list-style thinking, and remind myself what it feels like not to be entertained, engaged, or distracted 24/7.
Journalling. I have journaled every day for 5 years, maybe longer. I prefer to journal in the evening and I basically coach myself. I ask myself how I felt that day, and what I could have done differently to have better results, or what can I do to feel better tomorrow… I keep it simple but I make sure I do it every day and it’s the only ‘routine’ I have in my business.
I plan my year out in advance in December or January, and then I have weekly all-hands meetings that last about 90 minutes to make sure everyone is on-track to accomplish their ‘rocks’ for the week, the month and the larger projects for the year itself.
Brand building for us is an ongoing process of micro and macro perspectives. We’re in the trenches daily, and weekly we ascend to the mountaintop view and mastermind around where we are versus where we want to go. We stay open to new possibilities while keeping our sites on the horizon of our macro goals.
Now, this may seem completely counter-intuitive for someone like me who has built a business around productivity and optimizing our professional lives. But here goes. I cut my own grass. Yes, I could pay someone else to do it. I’m pretty good at outsourcing. But my time on the lawn tractor allows me to assess how my business is going, where I’d like to head and what roadblocks I see in front of me. I just carve the same predictable pattern…up, back and reverse, up back reverse, and the answers seem to come.
Welcome To The Anti Hustle
Some people assume that my love for Anti Hustle means I hate hard work.
That I expect hand-outs. That I want miracles.
That, as the millennial generation is often labelled as, I’m a snowflake who wouldn’t know a hard days work if I saw it.
No. I am not anti-work. I know you have to work hard to get what you want.
But there’s a difference to working hard and having a good, hard work-ethic.
Work ethic = commiting to the task at hand.
Hard work = working, often for the sake of working.
The most successful people I know:
- Those who have a massive impact on those they serve.
- Those who are healthy, happy and fulfilled with their lives.
- Those who have love both for themselves and others.
… are those who work “ON” their business — not ‘in’ it.
The relentless stream of “hustle” we’re fed preys on our insecurity, which in turn fuels the temptation to work longer and harder. We know, deep down, the solution is to step back and figure out what the real solution is — the work we need to do.
But that’s hard. That’s real shit, right there. That’s deep, and requires REAL hard work.
So, our fear kicks in. Tricks us into thinking that ‘shiny object’ may solve our problem.
- Just work longer, because that will solve your problem…
- Just grind the gears harder, because that’s what [ insert guru ] does…
- Just start this new project, because everyone who does is successful…
This is why those who hustle are the laziest of us all.
They do a little bit of everything, so they can help everyone…
… yet in reality, they serve nobody and impact nothing.
Worse of all, they take their own mind, body, and soul on a torrid journey.
Every morning I write two gratitude lists. One is for the things that I am grateful for right now, and the other is a “future gratitude list”: things that I am grateful for that just haven’t materialized yet. This whole process takes about 5 minutes and gets me focused on what I have and what’s coming!
I write an email to my list on a daily basis. This gives me the opportunity to reflect on the patterns I see in my business and life, and also gives me the opportunity to share my journey with others. My hope is that by sharing my reflections as they come up, others may see some of their own patterns.
I READ BOOKS BY DEAD PEOPLE. One to three a week. Once you understand the Lindy Effect, you should disdain living authors. Anything that has survived for hundreds or thousands of years is more likely to continue to survive. Whereas that #1 NYTimes Bestseller at the airport bookstore? That’s garbage; a weed: here today, gone tomorrow — chances are that nobody will be reading it in one hundred years. If the great in every age revisited and studied a text as a source of profound insight, there is also something for you to learn from it.
I’ve spoken of the Millennial vs Boomer debate before.
On the one hand, us millennials have it better than any generation before us. We’re lucky.
Yet on the other, we face greater obstacles now than at any point in history.
Because until recently, everyone lived in a bubble.
They saw what was in front of them — it was simple.
You were nurtured by your friends and family, through school and the limited media. You existed in a local setting, and therefore were given only so many options to live your life. This is both good and bad.
Today… the options we’re given is limitless. We have access to almost ALL the information that’s ever been created. Most of it at a swipe of a finger.
We are nurtured via an endless media, which not only features experienced people who have worked their way to the top, but anyone who wishes to share their story with you online as an ‘influencer’.
We see them. But it’s hard to know what’s real. It’s confusing and overwhelming. It’s seducing.
It begins small. You want a little more:
- More money…
- More friends…
- More fame…
- More stuff…
- More freedom…
Before long, you’re obsessed about gaining more. But more what, exactly?
Do you know? Do you question it?
Or are you just following someone else’s lead and blindly doing as they say / do?
This is why I say #FucktheHustle. Because the “hustle” is what grabs you by the neck and pushes you down the rabbit hole of more. But by pursuing more… you spend less time committing to less.
- Less time reflecting…
- Less time thinking…
- Less time questioning what we have and desire…
- Less time being grateful…
- Less time loving — those we love and our own self.
I find the true value of time lies in the in-between.
That time in-between those tasks we do. The time that is free of responsibility and action.
The time we give ourselves to walk, think and simply sit.
The Hustle steals this from us — from you.
But it’s a choice we get to make — a choice YOU get to make.
I ask myself regularly what kind of support I feel I need. Then I go find it. It’s too easy as an entrepreneur to end up in a lone-wolf mode, thinking you can do it all, and grinding metal. I’ve had to train myself to ask for help more often. We need outside connection and perspective. We need a place to share our struggles. Find a coach, mastermind, cohort, friend, therapist, support group, assistant, or whatever other support you need. Don’t do it alone. Make sure to find people who are able to call you out on your blinders and B.S..
Without a doubt, meditation. I meditate first thing in the morning and last thing before I go to bed, which serves two purposes for me. Firstly, it helps me reset my brain by turning off thoughts and emotions that are not serving my greater mission and purpose. Secondly, it allows me to reflect on what I’m truly grateful for.
What I do is I create quarterly goals, and I use the OKR structure (which is objectives and key results). I then translate these into daily, weekly and monthly goals, which is what helps me to stay focussed on the work I need to do. The objective when doing this is always: what do I want to accomplish? I use Clickup to organize all these, and for each objective I set, it allows me to click on it and get more specific where it essentially asks: how do you know you have hit this objective? All this helps me see what I’m working on and what other people in my team are, and so I can hone in on areas I can improve (delegate, outsource, remove, etc…). I find this not only helps me stay focussed, but it’s a great reflection to revist once per quater.
We are so caught up in trying to look busy on our laptops, that we forget that the number one most productive thing you can do is be in flow. It’s no coincidence that your best ideas come to you in the shower or on on the toilette! As an entrepreneur, I have so many ideas and am constantly creating, that what I need to consistently do is to create space for creativity and play. I turn off my phone and go into nature, build something with my hands and I am also learning to play an instrument for the first time. Step into peace and flow and that’s when the best ideas will come.
I would say the one thing I do daily is write in a personal leadership diary which then builds into a monthly reflection session on my personal mission statement. It’s not a perfect science — in terms of, I am not perfect in doing it daily / monthly — but the concept of having those processes have been critical compasses for me in my own personal development.
At the end of each month, I go through my business and work calendars for that month. The goal of this exercise is to find and document my biggest accomplishment, biggest business challenge, and my favorite concert or event I attended. This allows me 10 minutes to look back and appreciate what’s happened, find what’s holding me back, and most importantly to not allow the months to blur together.
You cannot avoid the temptation to hustle and grind.
It’s there, surrounding you each day. It’s part of this modern world.
In the same way you cannot avoid pain, fear or hardship… you cannot avoid the hustle.
But what happens next; how you react to it… that is a choice. Your choice.
I often turn to one of my favourite quotes, “If there is one lesson I’ve learned from failure and success, it’s this. I am not the outcome. I am never the result. I am only the effort.”
The Hustle is the result and outcome.
It’s ego and face-value and fancy things.
It matters, because we choose to allow it to matter.
But what really matters, and the only thing we ever get to control is our effort.
- The impact we choose to have…
- The purpose we commit to…
- The meaning we give what we do…
All this takes place during the in-between.
Between the tasks we do and don’t 😉
Hustling doesn’t allow you to step into the in-between. It keeps you busy with more-more-more.
But by always striving for more, you almost always end up doing less.
I make space at the end of my day, everyday to give gratitude and also celebrate any wins – big or small. I find that the more I can step back and gain perspective on all of the great things going on in my business and life, the more spaciousness I create. And as a perpetually driven person, I’ve found that stopping to celebrate even the smallest wins and acknowledge progress has led to feeling more fulfilled and at peace.
I start my day ridiculously early; usually hitting the office around 4-5am. There’s no discipline in that. It’s just how I’m built naturally. What does take discipline — and allows me to step back — is spending those first 10-15 minutes ruthlessly focusing on the question, ‘What’s the single most important thing I could be doing?’ I return to that question throughout the day as well. As a reminder, I’ve added it as my computer background and taped the same line to the bottom of my monitor. Nothing drives me back to first things first quite like it.
I use the Productivity Planner every day to make sure that I’m staying on top of my tasks and actually being productive. IT has been a gamechanger for me. While it isn’t a daily / weekly / monthly thing I do, every time I go to do something I think about “Is this something that I need to be doing? Will this task be repeated and can I create a template for it?” I also use Asana to help me assign and outsource areas of my business to my team that I don’t need to do be doing or isn’t my sweet spot.
My husband, Kevin, and I always take time to check in with each other on what’s going on in both our businesses and lives. During those conversations we discuss how we can support each other. When we want to reflect on life, we usually just watch some of our older vlogs together to see how far we’ve come and what we’ve been up to over the years.
THOSE WHO HUSTLE ARE THE LAZIEST PEOPLE OF ALL!
Each day you’re given 1,440 minutes.
We’re all given that same quota. No more. No less.
One day, those minutes will dry up. Time is finite like that.
A moment passes, and it’s gone forever. It’s ticking. Your life… is vanishing. Literally before your eyes. You get to choose how to spend your time.
If you choose to spend it working, fine.
If you choose to spend it not working, also fine.
The point is to choose. To be conscious of the choice you make.
Which is ultimately why I hate the hustle — because you aren’t conscious of anything when caught inside it. You just wake up each day and get to work, until one day you’re no longer able to.
There’s no rewind button. No re-do on this life you lead. You simply get to live it — right now.
The longer you choose to hustle, the less you get to live.
You’re on autopilot, often living someone else’s life.
If that’s the life you choose to live, so be it.
But if you don’t want that… do something about it.
I’ll offer no tips on how to do so, as the fine folk featured in this article have already done that. They have personally inspired me, and continue to do so. They have given you an insight into their mind, and the lives they choose to live.
Many of them — to an extent, all of them — have lost themselves amongst the hustle at some point. They escaped it and found the Anti Hustle. You can too. As can I.
I hope they’ve inspired you to stop, slow down and spend a little time with yourself.
It’s a combination of two habits: Exercising and listening to podcasts (while exercising.) For me, going for a run / hike / walk provides a way to clear my head and mull over my current challenges. And I’ll often maximize this experience by listening to business or money related podcasts. Usually after an hour of movement, I’ll come back with at least an idea or two that’s worth pursuing.
I meditate every morning and I play every day. Meditation allows me to exist in observation—without agenda—and oftentimes leads to wonderful revelations. I see play as a celebration & expression of gratitude for life itself. The vibration that play puts me in allows me to observe my life and the omniverse from a more macro perspective.
It’s key to surround yourself with great people that truly want you to be a better version of yourself. If you do this you go beyond surface level conversations and get to having real conversations about life and things that truly matter. I’d love to say if I just went on a beach somewhere to reflect on life I could get it figured out, but it’s hard to accomplish big things alone. Aligning yourself with people that want you to be happy and successful is key to consistent reflection.
I write each of my goals 3 times every single morning. I have 5 business and 5 personal goals. This allows me to remain focused on the big picture and make sure I’m not spending time on things that aren’t important right now. It’s very easy to build something you didn’t mean to if you stay on the hamster wheel and forget why you’re doing what you’re doing, so this “goals refresh” is a vital and unmissed part of every single day.
Welcome to The Anti Hustle
I am committed to #FucktheHustle
I am by no means a finished article. Each day I go to battle with myself. I, like everyone, am tempted by the hustle’s seducing ways. I do my best to fight it. Because I’m a father. I’m a partner. I’m a man.
I am a human being who deserves to live a fulfilling life.
You do, too. #FucktheHustle. Fuck what all those people you comapre yourself to do and don’t do. Fuck the pressure that everyone creates. Fuck the pressure that you create for yourself.
Wake the fuck up.
Once you do… you can become the person the world needs.
I began to question all this a few years ago, when I found out my daughter was to enter this world. It forces me to truly question the life I lived, and the way I used (and abused) time. This led me on a journey, which, as it often does, took me to the page.
That’s what us writers do, after all 😉
My latest book (a parable / fable) very much centres around this Anti Hustle Mentality. If you found reading this at all curious, you may like to check it out.