One of the words synonymous with entrepreneurship is that of hustling.
When you think of the word, though, does it conjure up a positive or a negative image?
There is a negative connotation to hustling which is not what I am referring to: Fraud or swindling; or being underhanded.
Rather it is about obtaining by forceful action and persuasion.
The primary agent of this persuasion and action is you!
You may have learnt great lessons from 2017; but this is 2018.
Are you going to “hustle” and hold yourself accountable to action and persuade yourself to go the whole 9 yards-maximizing on 2017?
Magic happens when we learn the habit of healthy hustling.
Things may come to those who wait but only the things left by those who hustle, said American statesman, Abraham Lincoln.
Here are five things I have learnt about healthy hustling:
Focus on what you can influence
It is not efficient to spend energy, time and resources on those areas that you actually have no control over.
Rather, by knowing what is within your ambit, and focusing on these, you up the likelihood of gaining meaningful momentum.
As an example, we are unable to take responsibility for other’s use of water as a precious resource. We are, however, 100% responsible for what happens in our circle, be it at home or work. Focus on that area will bring solutions which can be scaled.
Up your daily effort of hustling
A little increase of 2 degrees is the difference between nearly boiling and boiling. Small, incremental changes over time can yield significant results.
You are the best person to commentate on the degree of effort you put into the day; and whether you can push a further 2 degrees. That’s where the magic lies!
Keep looking for opportunities
It is my privilege to lead a committed team at the Centre for Entrepreneurship (CFE), and we are constantly looking for ways to add value to our beneficiaries (over 50 at the last count).
I refuse to limit my looking to just during the week or in working hours.
I have found some opportunities outside of official hours, and have brought these back to add value to the CFE.
Not every one landed, was relevant or translated into real change. Yet some did, and it is for that reason that I keep on looking 24/7.
Discern between you and your product or service
The journey of an entrepreneur requires that they grow in the skill of selling. (I hear some people groaning, and saying “That’s just not me”!)
All entrepreneurs, regardless of their offering, are involved in sales.
It may be selling you; selling the idea; the brand, the product or the service. But you are in sales.
Here’s the interesting thing though. Your business is your baby, and when you are selling your business, you will get quite a few no’s.
These are generally aimed at the product or service and not a reflection of your value. You do yourself an enormous favour in soon learning the difference.
To give too much place to no’s as personal rejection can seriously stump your hustling.
Do something every day towards your goal or purpose
This is similar to point 2 with this exception, make it a habit that you won’t sleep until that one thing is completed.
It is usually a step, decision or action that takes you closer to where you want to be.
It is also measurable, for example, it could be not going to bed until I have completed
10 000 steps; or read three to five pages in one of three business books I am reading; or following up on a key relationship or network through email, telephone or meeting.
It will differ from person to person but this is about you, upping the hustle.
In conclusion, here are 10 great quotes on hustling that could help you become a hustler hero!
“Good things happen to those who hustle” – Anais Nin
“My entire life can be summed up in four words: “I hustled. I conquered” – Unknown
“The dream is free. The hustle is sold separately” – Unknown
“You must either modify your dreams or magnify your skills” – Jim Rohn
“Invest in your dreams. Grind now. Shine later” – Unknown
“What you lack in talent can be made up with desire, hustle and giving 110% all the time” – Don Zimmer
“Hustle beats talent when talent doesn’t hustle” – Ross Simmonds
“Greatness only comes before hustle in the dictionary” – Ross Simmonds. Some people want it to happen, some people wish it would happen, others make it happen” – Michael Jordan
“Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t. So that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can’t” – Unknown
Steve Reid is the manager of the Centre for Entrepreneurship at False Bay College. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.falsebayincubate.co.za for more about the CFE.