What you need to know 6 months in..
“What the hell have I just done? What am I thinking?! I don’t even have a plan. How the heck am I going to make it on my own? It was the wrong move. I’m probably going to fail. My money will run out, even if I do start to gain some traction.
What is this going to do for my reputation? I don’t even have much experience in presenting. How the feck do I start again from here? What if I nothing comes of it? What if I fail? I’m too old to change my path. I’ve passed it. No one will even take me seriously. And now, I’ve gone and started a blog about it all! Other people are just going to know how much I suck, now.
I’ll never live this down. This isn’t going to go anywhere. Who do I think I am?! I’m a flippin’ idiot, not a hustler.”
Picture me, sitting at my desk, looking out at the ocean from my seventh floor office space, with all of these thoughts running through my head immediately after I’d handed in my resignation. I was putting on a brave face, because you know, I had to at least appear to be positive about it.. If people knew I was second-guessing my decision, it would have defeated the purpose I thought I had..
My final 5 weeks at work were ridiculously busy. During work hours, I was trying my best to leave a great impression, going above and beyond to keep everyone happy in case there was a moment where I changed my mind about it all, and had to beg for my job back..
After work hours, I was busy trying to create this very website, learning bits of HTML and trial and error-ing my way through several hundred different set ups, with several hundred different plugins, widgets and customizations (definitely still a LOT to learn!).
My first official day being out of a job was so odd. I didn’t really know what to do. Nothing had really changed.. It was a Monday, naturally, and my friends were still at work.. My clients were still at work.. My bosses were still at work.. But I was at home. Sitting in front of my laptop. Wondering where the hell I go next.
I consumed several cups of coffee that day. I remember checking the time over and over again, wondering how it was going so slowly, and how I was going to fill it all in.. I remember wondering whether or not to put make-up on, whether or not to appear presentable, whether or not I even cared.. I didn’t even send one email that day, because I had no idea how to pitch myself, no idea what I was doing, no idea what to say.. Because, really, I was a nobody.
This trend went on for the first couple of weeks. And I wasn’t feeling very good about it. I watched my rent money disappear each week, and watched my savings account start to decline. I checked my emails relentlessly, in case one of my contacts had replied.. I cleaned my room over and over and over again, convinced that once I had my immediate surroundings in order, my whole life would follow suit.
The novelty of being a hustler had worn off after just one month. Great. What a winner, Lucy. How very noble of you.
But then.. A turning point.
Something external changed my whole perspective.
One morning, I woke up, and saw that 1,000 people were following me on Instagram. Now, numbers are something I try to focus on as little as possible, because as essential as they are, I feel like stressing too much about them can be detrimental to the authenticity of one’s greater purpose.
BUT, I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t totally flattered. I realized that there were 1,000 people rooting for me. 1,000 people who cared. 1,000 people that gave a shit about how this story goes. There were 1,000 people who may need my terrible jokes, 1,000 people who might actually gain something, 1,000 people who may learn from my mistakes, from the things that I experience..
And that gave me a fresh wave of motivation. I realized that this was bigger than me. This was bigger than just my dream. This was bigger than I ever thought possible.
Monday Hustle was becoming a movement.
I was hit with a fresh wave of motivation, got my A in to G and started to work for something more than just myself. I started to work for everyone who was taking a chance to believe in this hustle thing. I started to work so I could make every single one of the Monday Hustle followers excited, driven and maybe even a little bit proud.
And things started to happen..
There was fashion week. There was featuring in Collective Hub magazine. There was the amazing presenting job with Nando’s. There was ZM. There was meeting my childhood idol, Lucy Lawless. There was the film job. There were collaborations, connections, coffee dates, there were people asking for advice, people sharing their stories with me, strangers sending their encouragement..
My last day at work was July 10th, 2015. I am writing this on January 10th, 2016, exactly 6 months later.
And when I replay the last 6 months like that, it makes me realize.. Shit, that was a good move.
So what learnings do I have to offer you, a short half year in to my hustle? That you won’t always be happy. It won’t always feel right. You won’t have any idea about what’s coming at you next. You will stress about the little things. There will be uncertainty. You will be kept up at night by your thoughts. Your savings will likely dwindle. You’ll question your sanity, your deservedness, your passions. You will second-guess everything you have done.
But when you start to work for something that you personally find fulfilling? When you realize that the hustle isn’t just about you? When you realize that the skills you have can benefit others in a positive way? When you live for your bigger picture, for your greater purpose, when you decide to take your happiness in to your own hands?
It really is a different kind of life.
Have you learnt anything from your hustle that could be of benefit to someone just starting out? Would love to hear from you! Comment below, or find me on Facebook, Instagram or email – email@example.com J