Feb 10

African-American-businessman

There’s a lot to be said about hustling. You will find that a lot of “hustlers” brag on their ability to take a beating and “do what it takes,” but is that something to brag about? Their life is not really enviable, is it? It’s not enough to hustle, just like it’s not enough to be self-employed. – which people brag about quite a bit. Speaking from experience, a good number of people who brag about having their own thing are not doing as well as they would have you believe.

Remember, entrepreneurship is a lonely journey. After several years of writing my own checks and grinding out 12 hour workdays, the idea of “being my own boss,” paled in comparison to the idea of “getting out.” I never bragged about my hustling but I know that a lot of people envied me for “setting my own hours”. But I was a slave to debtors and a business plan that was too ambitious to meet. This type of situation forces you to be on all the time and you can’t be on all the time, not if you want to plan and make strategies for the future.

The rat race isn’t exclusive to the employees and the beta model working individual. It encompasses the self-employed as well, especially the self-employed without any sort of passive income stream keeping the boat afloat. You grind and grind and grind all day to get more money, thinking that there is a ceiling where you can hire people and step away. It’s like the crime lord’s romantic idea of going legitimate after a life of near-misses. You want to get down and dirty and then walk away to reap the rewards of your hard work. But the reality is that we haven’t put the time in to build ideas with like-minded hustlers, and we haven’t brainstormed a realistic path of escape.

The ultimate dream is to build businesses, make them autonomous by setting up a pipeline, and then ride off into the sunset with a satchel filled with cash. The ultimate reality is that outside of a “boss” giving you a directive, you are no different that Joe and Jane Ham-and-Egger, churning out change in order to live. To be grinding after so long is hustling backwards, there is no other way around it, it’s hustling backwards.

“… but I convinced myself that I was simply buying time. For what? Hell, I didn’t know, but fate gives you hints of the future that you want for yourself and I was the type to pay attention…”The Factory

It’s easy to get caught up in the weeds. Life doesn’t allow you time for planning, studying, and changing gears. You have to step out of your own skin, look at the big picture, and then carve out some time to give yourself a review. It isn’t always about working harder if you wish to get ahead, sometimes we have to pump the brakes and realize that we’re spinning our wheels and it will never get any easier.

This is something that I struggle with even to this day. By default I have a compulsive need to finish tasks, but there’s something to be said about grinding smarter, it’s what makes so many people get ahead of us in their respective careers. Take some time, evaluate your position, and make some moves towards change. An insane person is the one that keeps on doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result, but if we want change we need to be smart about it.

“Never let the game get ahead of you, get a better view.” – ‘Play on Playa’ – Snoop Dogg

If you like fiction and realistic rags to riches stories, check out my book “The Factory” on your favorite ebook seller. I’m not the grandest of hustlers but I’ve been around the block for a little bit and made enough to take my life by the reins. I see so many mistakes and misunderstandings when it comes to entrepreneurship and there is a lot to be said about planning.

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  • Aaron

    I’ve slowly been coming to this realization.