Breaking the Hustle Doesn't Come Guilt-Free

With the holidays getting closer, most ventures are starting to wind down, allowing folks to really reflect on the significance of rest - though there's this underscore of guilt that follows "rest" for an aspiring founder. 

Not many founders/entrepreneurs highlight their rest time.. so all we see from the outside is the hustle culture - and we're ready to match it - believing it's the only way to succeed and reach our goals. But how sustainable is that ... really?


Vulnerably, I hit a point this week that parents worldwide might call a "meltdown" over something so embarrassingly small I won't even bore you with context, but it prompted me to ask myself,

"Why on earth is this happening?"

For the first time in a year, I feel like I'm actually getting the traction I've been looking for, AND I finally have a clear(er) path to navigate - so why, why, why was I suddenly having these irrational outbreaks of emotion?! I'm going to guess... underlying guilt, pressure, and imbalance.

Really since Thanksgiving, the private events industry has slowed down and deadlines started loosening up, allowing me some extra breathing room in my schedule. While continuing to attend networking events in our community, I've also been taking  advantage of some of these days my schedule isn't booked to the hour. I've been filling my days with quality time with the people that mean most to me, catching up on neglected health appointments, volunteering for a local non-profit and shamelessly cuddling my pup in front of Christmas movies... it's been great.

It's funny, though. Any current, past, or future founder reading this would echo this same thought:

"But that's time you could be pouring into your business."

And it’s true! I get so excited to ‘relax’ and then this derivative of guilt starts setting in that I’m not spending my time “wisely” or “in alignment with my long term goals”. 

BUT I'm sharing this because the universe has been shoving signs and reminders at me all week that rest IS essential. And I'm not talking about the rest where you're just thinking about what you want to be working on.. I mean real, present, uninterrupted rest.

Showing up for ourselves, preserving mental health and boundaries, and nurturing the support in our network are the true cornerstones of long-term success. Sure, I could allocate all this time to deep research, number crunching, LinkedIn stalking, deck crafting, pitch perfecting... etc etc etc. But that's a road to burnout. Returning in the New Year burnt out, uninspired, and off my A-game? Not an option.

Look, hustle's crucial, it shapes the life we crave; yet, there's a razor-thin line between hustle and burnout. So here's my note to all of you – get the work done, but it's alright to take a breather and dive into something that fills your cup differently than your business does. Hike that trail, organize the closet, or binge watch those Hallmark movies. Then - come back refreshed, with sharper focus, and a tunnel vision game plan.

Booking that massage,