The Importance of Letting Yourself Recharge

Don’t burn out in pursuit of side hustle success.

Photo by Ben Kolde on Unsplash

These days, so called “side hustles” are the norm. It seems that every regular 9–5 worker has another project — usually a passion project — on the side.

This means we don’t just work at work. Countless productivity gurus will say you need to work on your side hustle before work, after work, at the weekend and even on your lunch break. Free time is a thing of the past.

The problem is that things like burnout and stress are not things of the past. And if you’re working all hours then that’s more likely to await you than a million-dollar success at your side hustle.

Not to say you should just give up — I’m not giving up mine, even if I haven’t managed to hit my goals every day. But we shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves if, sometimes, we choose to rest in our spare time instead of doing yet more hustling.

Recently I’ve been under the weather, dog-tired most evenings, so I’ve been going to bed early and forgoing my usual hour or so of late-night writing.

Have I felt guilty about that? You bet.

Was it the right thing to do? Absolutely.

On an immediate level, missing out on precious writing time (hard to come by with a full-time job and a six-month-old baby) is not going to help me achieve my 2020 goal of finishing my novel.

But maybe long term it will.

I’ll avoid burning myself out by working myself into the ground every day. I’ll avoid feeling the pressure of having to write something every single day. Plus, let’s be honest — if I’m forcing myself to write even when I don’t feel physically able to, what are the odds that the words will be useless and get deleted the next morning?

Sometimes, my side hustle has to be put quite literally to the side. Yours does, too. It will still be there, waiting, when you’re ready.

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