The last Monday Hustle post – ever
Let me answer your first question real quick. No – that headline wasn’t designed to be click-bait.
On June 15th 2015, Monday Hustle launched. I left my safe, socially acceptable 9-5, and, via my new shiny blog, made it seem as if sharing that small act of rebellion with the internet was a pretty casual thing; but in fact, it had taken two years’ of internal peer-pressure from the egotistical part of my personality for me to build the courage to actually do it. Once convinced, committed and drunk on YOLO, with resignation handed in, website built (how?) and first blog post written, I dove in.
Ever since, you’ve been my teammate on this journey as I’ve shared the ups, the downs, the failures and the hilariously bad mistakes I’ve made while hustling to glean opportunities in areas I feel excited by. Because of Monday Hustle’s tenacity and your support (and only because of it), I’ve achieved and been exposed to more awesome things, and more awesome people than I ever thought possible; and for that, I feel incredibly grateful, humbled and even a little bit proud of myself (which hardly ever happens – working on it).
However, despite my best efforts to remain as open, candid and authentic as one can be on the internet, and battling to keep my self worth separate from the social media game – being the human behind Monday Hustle has come with more than a few personal repercussions. I won’t list them, but there have been instances where I’ve sacrificed the happiness, the quality and the presence of my real self for the sake of my online self – and my biggest fear is that I’ve pushed away, and become distant from the people I love most in the process.
My initial goals for this platform came from a place of good intention –
- Hone my writing skills
- Build a community of go-getters
- Gain exposure to opportunities
- Have an external sense of accountability
That last one set me off on a unanticipated track.
Before Monday Hustle, I wasn’t ‘on’ Instagram. I wasn’t ‘on’ Facebook. Aside from the odd (frequent) ex-boyfriend stalk, Lucy O’Connor wasn’t really online; and although it might’ve appeared as if I embraced this new, available, consumable, manufactured, tailored, second ‘social media me’ identity wholeheartedly – it didn’t always feel wholly good. In fact, between the mindless scrolls, the extra insecurities born of comparison and the unwavering pressure I put on myself to design, document and curate my present life around future content – despite the quick hits of dopamine – that process has rarely felt good.
It’s likely that, through Instagram and blog post tone shifts, you started to sense the cracks. I do believe that if you try really (really) hard, as an individual, it is possible to separate your self worth from an external rating system that manifests in the form of follows, likes and comments (or lack thereof) – but clearly, it’s not for me. Those feedback loops are specifically designed to be addictive, not connective, and, after weighing up the pros and cons, continuing to be ‘on’ social media as ‘Monday Hustle’ is not the best way forward for my relationships, my focus, my progress, my professional/personal development, or my mental health.
Time to take my learnings. Find gratitude, and an overwhelming sense of appreciation for the process. And let Monday Hustle go.
In some ways, this makes me feel like a failure. Despite being aware of what is going on, I clearly don’t have the resilience to cope with it, the strength to overcome it, nor, ironically, the hustle to keep it going. But between navigating my snapped Achilles recovery, and becoming acutely aware of how desperately I’ve been trying, but how miserably I’ve been failing to re-discover my Monday Hustle mojo – there’s not much more I can do apart from shut up and listen to what the universe and my gut are so clearly trying to tell me.
Supporter, reader, follower, believer, advisor, scrutiniser, casual observer – whatever your level involvement has been on this amazingly wild journey – thank you. I hope that being a part of it has made you feel a sense of adventure, optimism and connection, however small. Going forward, I’d like to try and incite those same feelings in a different capacity.
I have no doubt that the ethos of Monday Hustle will live on – through your boldness, your individualism, your courage, your ability to laugh at how ridiculous it all is. Similarly, I hope Monday Hustle lives on through your commitment to being true to yourself, to back your decisions and to make difficult, ruthless and heartbreaking choices in order to craft the future that’s right for you.
While this platform will remain a repository, it will no longer be a real time autobiography; but of course there will be a next move. It’s not that the hustle is ending – just taking a different form. Writing and creative expression pump through my very veins, and are, in fact, my raison d’être. If you want to keep up to date with the next project, and continue to hang with this human away from Monday Hustle, sign up to the mailing list using the form at the bottom of this post – and I’ll be back in touch soon.
My last nugget of #MondayHustle #inspo? If you have the inkling, the idea, the dream; do it. Dive in. Embrace the experiment. Live it, breathe it and try as hard as you can to enjoy the process. Remain true to your essence as you seize all the incredible opportunities that taking a leap of faith will inevitably provide; but, if ever you get unexpected or dissatisfactory results, don’t think all is lost when you get a slap of realisation, and recognise that in order to move forward, you need to close that book, file it under ‘lessons learnt and experience gained’, and start to tinker away afresh.
Life is a process of trial and error. To admit failure is really to gain wisdom. And your biggest superpower is that you don’t know what you’re doing.
Thank you, a million times, for being an integral part of this chapter.