When I first heard 50 Cent’s album title was “Get Rich or Die Trying”, it made me quite uncomfortable. I thought to myself, these rappers again, with their guns and violence. They are willing to do anything to be successful even if it meant their demise. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that he wanted to do what he needed to do to be successful, regardless of his circumstances. A means for him to provide for his family and put food on the table. He is a hustler.
“Hustler” to me and many others have been a misconstrued word for uneducated people who do not have real jobs and as such do the odd jobs to make ends meet. Truth be told, we mostly look down on them and hope they straightened up in life, find a stable job and settle down like everyone else. One could say “Freelancers” are the new “Hustlers”
Freelancers are the new Hustlers
When I look back, these are the guys who in the end become entrepreneurs and highly successful. This is because they have no safety net called job security to fall back on so either they do what it takes to survive or they starve.
Most people who have secure jobs seem to have lost their spirit of hustling because they know where their next pay-check is coming from. For some, all is well and they work happily(or not) for several decades and retire with a company pension and move to a quiet town to live the rest of their days.
For many others, they live in fear of losing their job (their single source of income) despite hating it. They hate their jobs, hate the commute and at the end of the month, the paycheck hardly covers their expenses.
Robert Kiyosaki said; “Most people are one paycheck away from being broke” and that is true for a large proportion of working people. They live from paycheck to paycheck. A sense of helplessness where they feel stuck in the rat race and don’t know how to get out.
Most people are one pay-check away from being broke
If you are in that situation don’t worry, you are not alone. About 90% of the working population find themselves in that very situation so you are in good company but you don’t have to stay there.
When I looked at Leonardo DiCaprio and the film Titanic; I thought to myself, this guy will be famous and rich forever. He wouldn’t have to feature in any more films again. How wrong I was. He’s made over 50 films thus challenging himself and always improving on his best. If you look around Hollywood, rich and famous stars are still hustling for new and challenging roles and they are getting better and getting richer in the process. That’s the major key for hustlers, continuous improvement. The moment you stop wanting anything and start getting lazy, you start to be become irrelevant.
Look at what happened to Blackberry and Nokia in the tech world. The moment they stopped improving and innovating, they got overtaken by their competition, Apple and Samsung. In less than 10 years, two of the most successful phone companies the world over are now struggling to stay relevant. I am very sure a kid below the age of 10 has never seen or used a Nokia or Blackberry phone. How time files.
How to Awaken the Hustler Within
1. The Hustler Spirit
Find another source of income to supplement your main job, even if it’s doing a part-time job on the weekend, do that. Selling your old gadgets on eBay or buying sale items and selling them for a profit. If done well could fetch you at least £100 extra income. Think about it, £100 free cash just by being a hustler and going out there to get your piece of the pie. Most people will never do this even though they can. They rather are comfortable, watch TV all day and binge on TV shows in their free time. Those actors are getting paid very well so if you hate your job, then it’s time for you to do something different to get you out of the current cycle you find yourself in.
2. Learn a New Skill
Ask yourself, if you lose your job right now, are you skilled enough to get another job in your industry or even a different industry. What skills make you unique and valuable to your business. Are these skills you can leverage to put yourself above other candidates? My local bank closed all their cashier tills and replaced them with modern cash machines. If you are an experienced cashier over 20 years, guess what, you are out of a job and no one is hiring. Advancement in technology will put many people out of a job. There are many short courses available online via Groupon/ Udemy/ Lynda.com at a small fee. You can learn a new language, become an IT professional, a masseuse, beautician, baker, nutritionist and the list goes on. Once you learn these skills, it might even boost your career prospects and open new doors for you in your current company or even outside. It might even lead to starting your own business.
3. Dream Big
The next time you see someone driving a Bentley, Ferrari or a Porsche, ask yourself; are they doing a 9–5 job or are they doing something on the side to be able to afford the car. It’s not about the car or the money. It’s about putting yourself in a position where you could afford that car. Have to admit some people rent out these cars to look good for a few days. I am talking about those who can actually afford them. These would be individuals who took the risk of being a hustler and are now running their own businesses and enjoying the fruits of their labour. I used to buy earphones for £1.99 in the early days, then I upgraded to £7.99 earphones and then a £30 pair. Today, my budget is around the Bose QC series and the Apple Airpods price range because I’m put myself in a position to afford these without breaking the bank.
4. Don’t Settle
If you have the skill, idea or talent to earn an extra £100 a month and you are not doing it, then you are not a hustler. All your ambition of comfortably taking care of your family, taking nice holidays, buying a nice home/ car and supporting good courses are all a dream. It’s like being the only person who can see a £100 in the street. Day after day, week after week that money lays there and you keep hoping that someone else will see it and put that money in your pocket. If you are capable of earning £20k a year and you are happily working away for £10k because the people are nice and the job is comfortable then here is a reality check; kids in their diapers now will be doing your job in a few years, and doing it better, quicker and for less money. It takes the average person a whole lifetime to be able to work, save and invest to be able to have a net wealth of about £1m. Alternately, you could set up a business, create a mobile app, social network(Mark Zuckerberg), drive very fast and very well (Lewis Hamilton) or become a very good professional footballer(Gareth Bale), you would easily make a million pounds within a year. It’s up to you.
5. Believe it’s Possible for You
This is the hardest for most people; believing it can happen for them. There are people less educated, from poorer backgrounds who are doing much better than you because they are hustling. I am sure you know many people who are very intelligent and did very well in school but are not doing as well as they could be. You are the captain of your ship, it’s up to you to steer that ship in the right direction. Learn from other captains who are doing a good job. Learn from their mistakes and keep your ship sailing in the right direction towards your destiny. Look at Bill Gates and the late Steve Jobs, both self-made billionaires. They were crazy enough to quit school and chase their passion. The renowned motivational speaker Les Brown was born in an abandoned building with his twin brother and later adopted by Ms Mamie Brown who was a domestic help. He lived in a poor suburb of Miami Florida growing up. Today, he is one of the most decorated public speakers of all time and has an MBA (mega bank account). His message is, “Look at your dream and tell yourself it’s possible”.
Look at your dream and tell yourself it’s possible”
I will conclude with a line from Michael Hyatt‘s podcast; “Your one and only life is a gift, go make it count”.