Lots of people have mixed feelings on what it means to hustle. Some equate working hard with hustling. It’s not the same. Others think hustling is simply taking a lot of action. While action is an essential element to hustling, it’s also not an equivalent.
Anyone can work hard and anyone can take action. Hustling is a mindset that allows you to cut through the clutter so your work is efficient. Hustling is seeing the bigger picture results of your actions so that your time is spent making connections that grow your business instead of spinning wheels that get you nowhere.
You can work hard at being mediocre. You can work really, really hard at it. You can also take lots and lots of actions, which do not bring you closer to your goals. Hustling, however, is that beautiful intersection of idea, strategy and implementation.
If you have a hunch your product or service will result in success with a specific demographic, do a little reaffirming research to back up your instincts, and then email 10 of these well-researched potentially new business clients. That type of action – aka work – will be one thousand times more effective than if you shot from the hip and emailed anyone and everyone. Sure, it’s a numbers game. But hustling is a calculated numbers game.
Being calculated – while it might have a negative connotation – is essentially another way of saying “working smarter” and should be a given to anyone who is an entrepreneur. The problem is, most people fail to think (calculate) a few steps ahead. If you view your business’ growth like a jigsaw puzzle, you’ll notice there are many paths that can get you from A to B. A, being your starting point with pieces needing to be filled, B, being the completed puzzle. When you’re being calculated, you’re opening yourself up to the universe to help guide through the many paths to completion. The universe meets you halfway. People get into trouble when they expect to get from A to B following only the specific path they had in mind. Guess what? If you really want to get from A to B, how you get there won’t matter.
Another ingredient to a successful business that people disregard is efficiency. The more efficient you are, the more you’re hustling. And if your goal is to become more and more efficient, you will naturally be hustling. Hustling cannot exist without efficiency. You can work hard and be inefficient. You can take a lot of actions, many of them unnecessary, and be inefficient. But you will always be efficient when you hustle because hustling is a state of mind. It’s the way in which you see the world, the way in which you pounce on opportunities that seem to appear right before your eyes. Or, the way in which you seem to merge disparate entities together to further your agenda. How do you know if you’re hustling? When your work is energizing your soul, your business is growing, your actions feel effortless, and there’s a smile on your face.
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