To Hustle, or Not to Hustle?

It seems like any time you go on social media, you’ll find advocates reminding you that the only people who are going to succeed are the people who have hustle.

Thrive invites voices from many spheres to share their perspectives on our Community platform. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team, and opinions expressed by Community contributors do not reflect the opinions of Thrive or its employees. More information on our Community guidelines is available here.
To Hustle, or Not to Hustle?
It seems like any time you go on social media, you’ll find advocates reminding you that the only people who are going to succeed are the people who have hustle.

As a leader, should you actually be doing far less than you’re doing? (Not too often you get asked that question!)

“Hustle” has become the new entrepreneurial religion.

It seems like any time you go on social media, you’ll find advocates reminding you that the only people who are going to succeed are the people who have hustle. 

Whether you’re a brand new entrepreneur, or you’re on your fifth successful business, it doesn’t matter. The Gospel of Hustle says you need to do more, get busier, and rest when you’re dead.

If you’ve tried the “hustle” version of leadership, or if you’re hustling now, you know that it’s a game you can never win! After all, the moment you stop to rest, relax, or just breathe …you’re no longer hustling and someone else might take your lead. As a leader, a “hustle” mindset means you constantly feel the pressure to be busy, moving, and active. If you’re not in the office, you’re on your laptop or phone (or your scheming for how you can get back to work).

Work, or work-related activities, become all-consuming.

And with the easy access to email, social media, and possible clients that the internet has given us, your hustle can be 24/7! (Some would say that’s exactly as it should be!)

Recently, I had a chance to interview Ajit Nawalkha and his thoughts on the religion of “hustle” Here’s a little about him:

Ajit Nawalkha, is a serial entrepreneur, global educator & consultant.

From non-profit intern, to a CEO of an international company he raised up by immersing himself in entrepreneurship, value-based leadership, and learning how to double his business while also impacting more and more people. 

Over the past decade he has helped build training and coaching companies to inspire the coming generation, and is passionate about transforming entrepreneurs to help them live on purpose, enjoy their lives, and increase their profits. 

He believes entrepreneurs and leaders CAN have it all: business success, health, fulfilled lives, and thriving relationships. All this, with no need to sacrifice other parts of your life in the name of your business. He’s the author of the bestselling book “Live Big: The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Passion, Practicality, and Purpose”.

Ajit believes that the new generation is entering the workforce with a new set of values.

This has created an internal conflict, which has started a new conversation about what is actually important and valuable. As there hasn’t yet been a full integration of these new ideas, we’re working and leading in difficult times. For example, there is confusion about the “right way”, and many organizations are finding themselves having to reevaluate their priorities and values.

One positive thing about these changes?

There is greater emphasis on creating wealth AND living lives of joy and fulfillment. Rather than being willing to work in situations that provide income but not purpose, people are pushing back. There is a greater expectation that people should be able to find value in what they do, and that their organizations should reflect their priorities as well.

Unfortunately, we humans tend to embrace polarity.

On one side, the capitalists who believe capitalism is the only way…and on the other hand a socialist group that has desires that would be wonderful, but possibly not practical. Ajit and I are hopeful that the new trends emerging will help create a new expectation somewhere in the middle.

And the idea that we should all be hustling 24/7 in order to achieve our dreams? Hopefully that fades out, along with the other extremes!

We can choose to refocus on community.

Ajit believes that entrepreneurs do NOT need to hustle as a lifestyle. He shares that hustle is not the answer to growth. Companies are not built by the number of hours put in by the founder. If that’s the case for your company, you’ll hit a hard ceiling eventually. Why? Because you can only do so much. You simply cannot build a company with pure hustle. 

You build by creating a community around you, and then building leadership within that group. As you build leaders within your business, you can truly have it all. 

Because here’s the truth about hustle: it has become a hero because it makes good TV (and social media content). It has drama, risk, high stakes, and big breakdowns. However…

Hustle is not healthy, and it’s not necessary.

Hustle will only take you so far, and you’ll never reach long term sustainability if your entire approach to business is hustle, and hustle alone. So rather than getting sucked into the hustle trap, what if you became an example of a different kind of leader?

Taking a different path will absolutely require you to take some brave steps. You have to be willing to be different, and to push back on the current norms within business, leadership, and entrepreneurship. 

Ajit shared invaluable information his own journey, the 4×4 method, and how he reimagined the way he used the time in his life. Curious? Listen to the full episode here!

The mic is yours! What do you think of “hustle”, and are you open to doing less of it?

To find out more about Ajit, visit

With gratitude,
Dov Baron, Expert on Leadership, presents his Authentic Leadership Matrix!

My Authentic Leadership Matrix is free this link! Why? Because one of the questions I’m most often asked is; What authentic leadership is and how do we define it? As a result, with years of experience and extensive requests, I created the Authentic Leadership Matrix. It’s designed to give you a clear process of how to perform in each of the five main areas that are required for you to become a world-class authentic leader. Start your yes and no evaluation to discover your leadership traits here:

Want to retain your top talent? Then my “Fiercely Loyal” book is for you! Plus get your free: “How to instantly bond any team” infographic.

Copyright: Dov Baron International© 2020

You might also like...


7 Reasons to Change Your Thinking about a Side Hustle

Image: Justin Veenema

How to Start a Side Hustle

by Melanie Hardcastle

Transform Your Side Hustle Into a Lucrative Business

by Sarah Rose Global
We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.