Once upon a different Carla-life, I was all about the side projects.
These ventures were where I gleaned energy & fulfillment I wasn’t currently receiving from my day job.
I hustled on the side as a way to increase my joy.
Decades later I joke about side hustle all the damn time.
In addition, if you hang with me offline, you’re aware I long to rescue a sidekick for The Doodle and name her Sidehustle.
(or 5k. it makes me laugh to imagine telling people I walked 5k that morning, but I digress.)
The past four months, however, I’ve realized something,
At first, as with most things in initial stages, hustling seemed exciting.
It was energizing.
It was thrilling.
When a new friend remarked how ‘even my sidehustles had sidehustles’ I wanted to kiss him full on the mouth.
(I didn’t. I said thank you.)
To my delight the act of hustling appeared to be everything I never knew I always wanted.
I liked ‘things‘ + I loved money + I needed to fill my time= I hustled.
I worked. I pitched for more work. I created side gigs. I sold stuffs.
I never stopped *and* I was proud of my lack of stoppage.
Yet one night as a friend and I brainstormed another “OK, so we could join forces and do ___ together to make money” scheme it became clear:
…and I hate being busy.
Grinding. Juggling. To-do list obsessions. All of it.
Somewhere along the way I’d forgotten I built my personal brand on the unapologetic embracing of the fact I’m pretty average.
As I hustled I’d forgotten what I’d instructed clients about resistance training translated into how I led my life:
Do less than ‘full throttle’ each day and you’ll rise the next eager and excited to do it all again.
I’d morphed into balls-to-the-wall-every-damn-day-Carla and it was neither a good thing nor was it bringing me joy.
Hustling had become my new BUSY.
I needed to remind myself there’s a reason why I’m a mono-tasker.
I stepped back, got honest with myself, and came to the uncomfortable awareness giving in to hustle mentality had morphed into distracted living.
Hustling was my new BUSY.
I’d begun filling my time in an effort to not slow down even through I knew the more I daydreamed (the horror! the hustle-free time!) the more my brain was capable of generating new ideas.
I was hustling for the sake of the hustle.
Even though I’d momentarily forgotten, underneath it all I knew the fact I preferred the no-hustle life had a lot to do with personality.
To my chagrin at times I’m Type B.
I’m not a perfectionist and, in fact, striving for perfection only succeeds in stressing me out.
I don’t settle for average; I embrace mediocrity (and wonder why it’s gotten a bad rap).
I have friends who are happy hustlers by nature.
Friends who, in the same fashion as extroverts who recharge through socializing, create energy the more they expend.
I have other Wingwomen who find themselves temporarily in the position of needing to hustle like the proverbial motherfucker (that’s a proverb, right?) by virtue of the situation they’re in.
Right now, at least for today, I’m neither woman.
And, because of that fact, I cannot allow my self-worth to be defined by how hard I hustle.
All these musings brought me back one of the first things I was taught while earning a degree I’m not quite using:
I know what ___ means to me. What does it mean to you?
- Is it synonymous with BUSY in your world, too, or does it mean something different in your neck of the ‘net?
Bea saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 5:03 am
I stopped saying busy along time ago. I remember when you said you traded it for” it’s just not a priority right now” which helped. I still hustle LOL
jennifer saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 5:32 am
Of course when I hustle I’m thinking of that 1970s dance, DO THE HUSTLE!
Annmarie saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 6:22 am
I feel like I keep “busy” as a way of ignoring other things but as I’ve been forced to ow down this past year due to health issues, I’ve realized I value my free time a little more than I used to. Hustlin’ ain’t all it’s cracked up to be!
Debbie saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 7:39 am
Thank you for this! As I’ve gotten older I no longer have the desire to push myself to my limits to earn more, get more, accomplish more. Because I seem to hang with so many younger (and smart, creative) women online, I began to wonder if I was just lazy, uninspired, or maybe just exhausted. I still work hard, but I’m not constantly looking to work harder. I love my down time!
Shari Broder saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 7:59 am
I’m another person who took the word “busy” out of my vocabulary. It just perpetuates the culture of doing too much and seemed like it has become some kind of status symbol. So much so that when I ask my MIL, who is one of the least busy people on Planet Earth, how she’s doing, she says, “I’m busy.” To her, that means she went to church that week, had dinner with a friend and had a doctor’s appointment! I have spent most of my life trying to do too much, and I am done with it. And with hustling. I don’t care what you call it. It’s not good. Great post, Carla!
Wendy saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 8:05 am
My blog keeps me busy but it isn’t a very lucrative side hustle! It does bring me a lot of satisfaction, but I need some balance in my life!
Rena saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 9:56 am
I used to be like that constantly working, but I want to watch my grandkids grow up and that seems so much more important than how much money I bring in each month.
Donna saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 12:48 pm
I’m enjoying quality over quantity these days.
cherylann saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 3:00 pm
If you are doing what you love to do then it’s not busy nor a hustle…it’s just living your life and doing what you were meant to.
messymimi saysFebruary 28, 2018 at 4:57 pm
Right now i am at that “in a position in life where i have to hustle.” It’s not fun, but it is what it is.
Angela Holmes saysMarch 6, 2018 at 7:27 am
I love to be busy with my works and I don’t feel it. Being busy with your work is not bad it means you are just enjoying doing it.