I used to buy into a very dangerous thing: hustle culture. Being booked and busy played into my ‘cool’ career image and even made me feel important. That is until I completely burned out and fell into a month-long lull that ate at my creativity. Rising and grinding until bedtime seemed like the only way to seem successful, especially online.
When you’re working full-time, running a successful side gig and working on a passion project, it makes for great content. However, there is no time for anything else. There goes your favorite hobby and any accompanied downtime. I barely had time to clean the house, and there was always a pile of laundry lingering in the corner of my bedroom.
I was so worried about staying on top of my hustle that I ignored every other important aspect of my life. It made me unhappy, and I was more anxious than ever. I knew things needed to change.
I cleaned up my social media feeds. No more scrolling through Instagram, feeling guilty about all of the people doing ‘all of the things.’ We live in a time where the unachievable seems almost easier for others, thanks to social media and all of the right filters. The simplest way to quiet your inner critic is to change what you’re consuming, a.k.a. anything that induces a negative feeling.
Delete and unfollow those accounts that make you feel bad. Replace them with new accounts that are inspiring and more relatable to your hobbies and interests. Now when I log on to any social account, I’m greeted with a much more nourishing feed than before.
When things start to feel out of your control, it’s the best time to practice mindfulness. For my process, I step away from my tech devices and start to journal. Sometimes I just create a list of things that I’m grateful for, or write out a current difficult situation for me. After 5 or 10 minutes of venting, I start to feel more balanced and clear.
Create a Wellness Routine
Wellness is for you. I may not make the healthiest choices all of the time, but I am aware that how good treating my mind and body well does for me. We should all have our own wellness routines to fall back on. We’ve written a lot about different ways to incorporate healthy routines into your daily life.
I like to follow a daily schedule that doesn’t make me feel pressured to be productive for eight hours straight — because that’s not even possible. I start the morning with coffee and reading. If I wake up in a bad mood, I’ll journal before checking my inbox so I start the workday with a fresh headspace. My evenings are for self-care and me-time.
Consider your daily meals as well. Make sure you’re eating a vibrant, healthy diet, and make healthy food choices more accessible in the kitchen. We put a huge bowl of fruit in the center of our dinner table so the option is always in our faces. It does help!
Find Your Workflow
Have you ever actually thought about the way you work, and how your energy flows? Do the two match up? Working from home has given me the freedom to develop my own work schedule based on how I’m feeling. For instance, if the creative spark hits me, I’ll schedule my day around writing and planning projects at work.
Design Your Career
When I feel stuck in a work situation, I take some time for myself so that I can reflect and manifest on my business future. Dream, and dream as big as you want when it comes to your career. I physically write these goals down in a journal, but you can also keep an ongoing note in your phone. Go back and reflect on these goals whenever things get really hard, and feel free to add to them whenever an idea strikes you. This exercise will help you get back to the big picture whenever things completely suck as you hustle.
Featured + main image from our interview with Suann Song