If you’ve spent any amount of time consuming marketing content then the chances are that you’ve come across Gary Vaynerchuk already, whether that’s in person at an event or whether you’ve discovered a podcast, a video or a social media update. And if you’ve come across Gary Vaynerchuk, you’ve almost certainly also heard him talk about hustle, the idea of putting in the hours and working as hard as you can to make your vision become a reality.
It’s certainly true that if you don’t put in the work, you don’t get the job done. The problem is that we’re at risk of creating a culture in which we’re focussing so hard on our work that we forget to live our lives. When this happens, we put ourselves at risk of nervous breakdowns or of exacerbating mental health problems, and those can take us out of action for months at a time – and that’s if we’re lucky.
As salespeople and marketers, we’re used to being under pressure and having long lists of tasks and heaps of impending deadlines. We have to hustle to a certain extent if we want to get our work done, but there’s a big difference between working as hard as you can for 10-12 hours during the week and between working 14-16 hours every single day.
Balancing hustle with longevity
Vaynerchuk also makes another point, which is that even when we’re coming up to 40 or 50 years old, we still have plenty of time left to achieve our goals. When we’re in our 20s or our 30s, we’re less than halfway into our career, and so while that’s no excuse to take it easy and to slack off, it does at least mean that we also have time to relax and to unwind if it’s going to boost our overall longevity.
We live in an interesting time where it seems as though every thought leader has a different view about what we should be doing. At the same time that Vaynerchuk is espousing hustle and hard work, we have people encouraging us to spend time meditating and even disconnecting entirely by turning off our phones and laptops and getting back to nature.
We can give people the benefit of the doubt and assume that the advice that they’re sharing is what’s worked best for them, but that doesn’t mean it’ll work best for everyone. Everyone is different, and while hustling works well for some people, for others it can lead to unnecessary pressure and even make us beat ourselves up because we’ve only worked a 60 hour week instead of a 70 hour week.
That’s why the best option for most people is to experiment with different approaches. Speaking personally, I tend to find that I work best with sudden bursts of energy, so I might hustle for three days and then take a half day off so I can recharge, regroup and take some time to look ahead to the future. It falls to you to find out what works best for you and then to make that your new normal. Good luck.
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