The hustle and burnout culture has become the norm these days, having increased productivity and the hustle factor is almost expected. So how do you combat this so you don't feel overwhelmed and overstressed? We're diving in.
If you’re apart of the generation that’s currently in college or have just graduated chances are high that you went through your elementary, middle school and high school days striving to get the very best grades, participate and be the best in sports, and pad your extracurriculars; filling your time until it was bursting and trying to do your very best.
And thus, with the millennial generation, the hustle (and burnout) culture was born.
Hustle culture is the idea that you must be always ‘on’, always working, anything you do should be working towards your ultimate career goal; whatever that may be. This is the only way you think you can be fulfilled. You can’t just put up with your job, you can’t even just like your job; you must love it. You must devote your whole heart to it, be passionate, be willing to do anything for it.
Working a 40 hour work week is slacking, and 60-80 hours is simply adequate, to really be thriving, you’re working closer to 100+ hours a week; sacrificing sleep, eating, and healthy habits in order to achieve your ultimate goal of outworking any and everyone so that you can be happy. Only chances are, you’re not actually happy.
The reality is, most of the time, your first internship, job, and even the couple of jobs after those first ones might kind of suck. The company you work for might not always align with your personal views, you’re working for the person you thought you’d be doing the job of, and a lot of your day to day work is well, kind of tedious. While we’re not sitting here to trying to tell you not to work hard at these first jobs, we are sitting here and telling you not to make them your whole life and honor the journey.
Don’t sacrifice your life and happiness for a job paying you just above minimum wage that would replace you faster than you’d be cold in the ground if you were to be hit by a car. The fact is, while you may think overworking will all be worth it in the end when you’re wildly successful, newsflash, it actually is mostly benefiting your boss.
For quite a few years now, wage growth, when compared to overall inflation, has remained fairly stagnant. You can work hard, be successful and even be passionate about your work, without killing yourself to do so. In fact, a great place to start is with an internship, or 2.
These can be so helpful because they tend to be short-term and you can get great insight into a job you might want. You can start by building up your resume and LinkedIn to score some of these jobs.
Once you’ve identified this you can take a few steps to prevent these fears. For example, if you’re scared of losing your job and of the financial burden that would put you in, create a budget and set up a ‘safety net’. That’s a savings account that has up to 6 months of expenses saved back for a rainy day.
This can lessen that fear for yourself if you know you’re secure, no matter what happens with your job. If you’re looking to become a little bit more literate with your finances, check out this book, it’s written specifically for those in their 20’s and 30’s who have student loan debt but are also looking to plan for the future.
However, if you’re going to run 26 miles and you start out at a sprint, giving it your all, by mile 2 you’re exhausted and you’re only able to give 90 percent, and by mile 3, you’re giving 80 percent and so on. By the time you're at mile 10, you’re dead tired and not making much progress towards completing that marathon.
The idea is the same for work. Your brain only has so much energy to give. It needs to pace itself, recharge, and reenergize. By allowing yourself to fully devote yourself to work for 6 to 8 hours a day and then recharging, relaxing, and taking care of your physical, mental, and emotional health the rest of the day, you’ll find yourself just as if not more productive than working 12 to 15 hour workdays.
If you struggle to close your laptop and leave it that way at the end of the day or take breaks to eat, get coffee or water, or exercise, try setting your schedule in a planner or a bullet journal and make a resolution to stick to it. We like this one, from Amazon.
If you’re trying to get away from fast food or frozen meals but aren’t experienced at cooking, try a meal delivery service, like HelloFresh! They come with premeasured ingredients and recipes that make messing up really difficult. If you're feeling really ambitious, maybe you could try out a new diet and see how it makes you feel. Check out how to be keto in college for some massive tips and a free grocery list.
Moving your body is a great way to reset your mental and physical health. Go for a run, get a home workout in, or even simply taking a short walk can be great ways to get moving. If you’re looking into starting strength training try these resistance bands to start! They’re easily stored, easily used, and super versatile for a variety of workouts from strength training to yoga!
Start by simply calling a friend or family member once a week to connect and check in on them, no work talk! Then work up to twice a week and then try to get out with friends at least once a month! This will encourage a healthier work-life balance and help keep you accountable for taking a break to have fun.
While self care doesn’t always mean facemasks and wine, it does sometimes and when your biggest vice is overwork, sometimes forcing yourself to do nothing for 30 minutes is the best gift you can give to yourself.
Some of our reader's favorite ways to take time for themselves is to cozy up in their beds and watch Netflix. Why? Because it can actually help ease your mind from thinking of all the tasks you need to do even just for 45 minutes. Here are some solid Netflix shows we think you might like.
Regardless of what ‘treat yourself’ looks like for you, being sure to incorporate it into your week can really help remove you, little by little, from hustle and burnout culture. Having a more balanced life will bring you more fulfillment than working 24/7 ever could; our value isn’t determined by how productive or successful we are and it’s high time we stop letting our bosses make us believe otherwise.