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F the Hustle

Just so we’re clear, when I say the above title, I say the whole word. I have a potty mouth like that.

Ok, but for reals… the pressure is no joke. Starting a business is WICKED (I’m from Boston) stressful. There’s so much to consider: your products, services, pricing strategy, marketing strategy, business goals, networking, and social media, just to name a few elements. For many of you, you’re planning and strategizing all of that in addition to having a ‘9 to 5’ too! And if you’re a parent on top of all that… damn, good luck.

It’s hard. Starting or building a business takes a TON of hard work. What I’ve found over the years is that a huge part of the stress lies in trying to do it all at once. There’s this #hustlehard mentality that’s brutal. You’re not getting up early enough. You’re not staying up late enough. You’re not sacrificing enough. And if you’re not sacrificing enough, it’s because you don’t care enough. It’s obviously not important enough to you. Oh, and you’re probably not meditating enough either. Fuck that noise.

I’ve talked to so many people who have a passion for something that could absolutely be a successful business, but they talk themselves out of it because they’re not a “hustler.” Stop it. Stop that mentality right now. You don’t have to hustle to be successful.

To create or build a business, you need to be passionate, committed, authentic, hardworking, and, perhaps hardest of all, patient. Most businesses don’t thrive overnight. If you want overnight success, then being an entrepreneur probably isn’t for you.

I’m so tired of the posts that are shaming people for not working hard enough. All these business coaches and marketers bragging about their 6-figure salary months and how it could all be yours if you just worked a little harder, sacrificed a little more. FFS (for 🦊 sake), that’s not how it works.

Say no to the shame. Say no to the hustle. Say no to taking on more than you can reasonably manage. I’m not telling you to just sit and chill, then hope for a miracle. No, you’re going to have to work hard for your business. But you can choose to do it organically and at your own pace.

I have an amazing client, a few actually, but the point is that she was on the cusp of launching what will no doubt be a beautiful and wildly successful business. She had so much on her plate with finalizing her product offering, writing content for her new website, and planning the launch. Then, she met a woman who asked if she provided a specific product that she doesn’t offer (yet).

She reached out to me feeling stressed about how she could figure it out and create this product for this woman. I told her that if this is something she feels compelled to create, then, by all means, create away. I also reminded her of the power of no. I told her that it is her business, and she should feel completely comfortable telling this prospective client that no, she doesn’t offer that product yet, but it could be coming soon. She left me a message that basically said, “Oh my god, I can say no? What a concept.”

We get so caught up in building our business and doing everything *right* that we think we have to say yes to every request and opportunity. We must say yes to every client and potential client request. No, you really don’t. Very few opportunities are actually “once in a lifetime” opportunities. They exist, but they’re rare.

“But Emily, how do I know when to say no?”

Here are three simple ways to help you contemplate whether or not that request or opportunity is worth it.

Trust your instincts.

Rather than rushing to “yes,” take a minute. Take a few deep breaths. Calm your body. Quiet your mind. Now listen to what your intuition is telling you. Is it nudging you to say yes to something new? Or is it starting to raise a red flag of caution?

Check in with your brand values.

Think about the brand values that you developed. Think about why they are an integral part of your brand. Then consider whether this new opportunity/request in alignment with those values? Or does it go against those values?

Review your business goals.

Go back to your business strategy and see if this opportunity/request serves your immediate and short-term goals. If it does, then you consider it. And remember, even if it serves your long-term goals, that doesn’t mean you’re ready for it right now. It’s ok to say, “someday, but not today.” There’s a reason I start with intuition and end with goals. We can overthink the logical elements endlessly. If you start with checking in with what your body and soul are telling you, then the logistical elements may seem clearer when you consider them. Yes, business is logical and strategic, but you should always listen to your instincts. Trust that your intuition will help guide you in the right direction.

I have many thoughts on our intuition’s role in business, but that’s another blog for another time.

So, in the meantime. Remember that YOU are in control of your business. Don’t cave to the pressure. Don’t cave to the that #hustlelife mentality.

Shine on, beautiful people!

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