ON HUSTLE CULTURE AND TOXIC PRODUCTIVITY
Being productive an amazing thing that makes us all feel good. But when does it become too much? Nowadays everyone and everything is telling you to work harder, longer, and hustle for what you want. This new idea of “hustle culture” is creating expectations for us that may not be possible, and are even dangerous for us to normalize.
You may be asking yourself “ What in the world does hustle culture even mean?”
In a web post, Marcella Jalberts says “ Hustle culture is the societal standard that you can only succeed by exerting yourself at max capacity professionally. Everyday.
Hustle culture does not sleep. Hustle culture does not take lunch breaks. Hustle culture is waking up Saturday morning and making spreadsheets instead of pancakes.
Hustle culture does not take into account what your goals in life really are.”
Now, I want you to sit back and think about this. How detrimental to your well being does this actually sound? If you ask me, it sounds like burnout and mental health problems just waiting to happen. You were made for so much more than work.
We should NEVER prioritize working over our health and well being.
It seems that everywhere we look, someone is bragging about how many hours they work, how much money they make, and how little sleep they get. It’s almost as if it’s some sort of competition. I’m here to tell you that in reality, that’s nothing to be proud of. Being proud of working hard and being productive is great, but being proud of denying yourself sleep or other things you may need is not something that you should fall victim to. It’s really easy to follow along with what everyone else is doing or saying, but the reality is- you have no idea what things people may be struggling with as a result of overworking themselves.
Burnout is something that MILLIONS of people struggle with every single day. In psychology, burnout is defined as a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. And that's just it. Our brains simply are not made to handle the stress of not being cared for. This idea that we need to “work work work!” and take no breaks is so detrimental to our health because we begin to ignore everything else that we need. It’s easy to ignore your need for sleep, food, rest, and fun- but only for so long. At some point, your brain is going to send you a very clear indication that you need a break. This can cause you to feel depressed to a point that you don’t want to do anything at all.
It’s so important to listen to your body and follow your intuition and listen to your body’s needs. Do what feels right in the moment. This doesn’t mean to completely ignore your responsibilities and do nothing all day; although sometimes this is necessary. This just means to balance your work with everything else that YOU need to be your highest self.
Sleep is a BIG one. I hear so many people say that they only get a few hours of sleep per night. I’ve even heard people utter the phrase “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.” You can think that way, but if you don’t sleep you’ll be dead sooner than you expect. I know that sounds dramatic, but seriously. Your mind and body can't function if you don't sleep. It will catch up to you in the long run.
What I'm really here to say is: It's okay to take a break. It's okay to not want to live up to the expectations of your workplace. It's okay to not take every shift available. It's okay to take a day off, or even two or three. We shouldn't have to feel bad for being human. We shouldn't have to feel bad about having a life outside of work and productivity. It's okay to just live life.
Go our with your friends
Relax when you need to
Have fun when you need to
Stop comparing your work ethic to those of people you don’t know on the internet
Live your life as you see fit. Our purpose on this earth is far more than working to survive.