What is the [no hustle]? It caught your eye and made you curious… but is it something that aligns with your goals for the future—let alone those in the here and now?
After all, most people preach the opposite of [no hustle] …
They say to work hard. work long. grind those gears.
They seem to have it “figured out”, too: the cars, the house, the lifestyle…
But there’s something about it that feels off to you.
Maybe you can’t quite put your finger on it.
I couldn’t either, for a long time.
But then I had my eyes opened, and once I saw it… well, I knew I’d never unsee it.
hustle culture … what even is it anyway?
I spend a lot of time speaking about the no hustle philosophy and why it matters.
It does, by design, shine a negative light on hustle culture.
The issue is, the real impact of hustle culture is misunderstood.
Many assume “the hustle” is all about late nights and burning the midnight oil; the stacking of side hustles and putting posters of Gary V on your wall. Others imagine Corporate Chad and how he stays in the office until late, hits the gym to prove something to someone, and then wakes early the next day to a routine of meditation and affirmation.
And sure, those form a part of hustle culture—a toxic part.
Yet it’s merely the tip of the iceberg as its real roots dig deep…
- Comparison Culture: the endless edited peeks we get into countless lives each day as we roam the web and scroll through social.
- Our Constant Connection: the incredible way we can connect with those we love, yet also be connected to so many people we do not and never will know.
- The Remote Revolution: the blurred lines between work and not-work, and how we have constant access (and temptation) to check in and switch on.
- Self Help(less) Hope: the boundless ability to learn, consume, and master ourselves through books, videos, courses, articles, threads, oh-my-gosh-my-head-already-hurts.
To say hustle culture only involves fourteen-hour workdays is like saying Dave Grohl is just the drummer from Nirvana. I mean, it’s true… but you’re just missing the point.
Right now, the hustle surrounds you.
Each day, you wake up at its mercy.
It tempts you. It wants to distract you.
And I’m afraid to tell you it likely does.
It’s good at its job and it drags you through the day almost every day. Sometimes you feel it in the form of stress and overwhelm. Yet most of the time it lingers in the background.
You sense it’s there… that there is something not quite right.
You just can’t put your finger on it.
So you carry on because that’s what you’ve been taught to do all your life. Plus, you’re so busy with all the to-dos on your list and the responsibilities that stack higher month on month.
Ain’t nobody got the time to think…
AND when you do stop to think… because maybe you work on yourself, meditate, do yoga, are committed to your health… well, you’re likely so consumed that all you feel is a numbing.
and all you hear is an annoying ringing.
That’s hustle culture for ya and that’s the impact it has.
In time, it leads to burnout and periods of pain: physical, emotional, et al.
Yet even when it doesn’t reach those levels, it eats away at you.
or as my friend AJ Leon says, dilutes you drip-by-drip-by-drip.
But what can you do? This is simply the life you lead and the world you live in.
Not so fast, my soon-to-be awakened friend.
There is another way and that way is the [no hustle].
introducing the [no hustle]
If the hustle is the constant carnage of chaotic comparisons and crippling connection with everyone at all times, then the [no hustle] is not that.
It involves you living life on your terms.
Whatever they may be.
For that reason alone, the [no hustle] isn’t easily defined because it’s personal and unique. What it means to me no doubt differs from you. That’s the beauty of it.
That said, there are some central philosophies that shine through…
1: whole life balance
Whole life balance (or as my buddy Ari Meisel likes to call it, whole life integration) is not the same as work/life balance. In fact, work-life balance isn’t real.
It’s one of those lies fed to you by society at large to keep you busy.
Maybe one day it existed when life at the office remained in silo to life at home.
But that’s no longer the case.
Today, the lines between work and everything else are blurred at best. To pursue a balance between these two competing worlds is folly. Instead, it’s important you appreciate your one life as the singular and fragile entity it is.
… integrating what matters so you can live in alignment.
2: mind + body + spirit
Speaking of alignment… you are but an imperfect human made of meat and bones.
(and lots of chemicals and hormones)
I know biology suggests there’s more to it than that, and it’s objectively clear that the fact we are alive is miraculous and beautiful. Yet imperfect all the same.
You are a body. You are a mind. You are a spirit.
To align these three aspects of you is to live a free life.
Yet aligning these while stuck in the hustle grows harder with each new technological advancement, reality series, and social media rabbit hole.
3: success, defined
A few years ago I wrote a book called The Successful Mistake after interviewing a lot of seemingly successful and happy people.
I learned a lot during this research and met many inspiring people.
Yet as I look back, only one takeaway truly shines through…
And that is how important it is to get clear on what success means to you.
The issue is, most have no clue; it’s not even on your radar because the hustle and bustle of life distracts you—and all your life you got fed wayward ideas of what “success” looks like.
A huge part of the [no hustle] is to stop, reflect, and review your current pursuit of success.
Assuming you come to the conclusion it’s Toxic AF, you then need to 1) get clear on what success actually does mean to you, and then 2) pursue it on your terms.
4: mile-deep mentality
That delightful dude, AJ Leon returns with some sage words he shared with me a few years back… how he couldn’t comprehend trying to serve millions of people (in business or otherwise) as doing so would only lead to inch-deep results.
Whereas all he cares about is going a mile deep with everything he does.
work. relationships. love. health. wealth. all of it.
You can want whatever you want. You can do what you like with your life. But you owe it to you and those you serve to make a f**king difference.
That requires a mile-deep mentality, not surface-level satisfaction.
5: effort over outcome
A quote I think of often and do my best to live by is this one from Kamal Ravikant:
“If there is one lesson I’ve learned from failure and success, it’s this. I am not the outcome. I am never the result. I am only the effort.” – from Live Your Truth, one of my all-time fave books.
So much of life remains outside of your control.
But what you can control is the effort you put in.
To escape the hustle is to focus on this, not the outcome; to stride forward being your best self as often as you can; to have principles, to live by these, and keep growing and being.
It’s hard to do this inside of the hustle because you’re 1) busy, stressed, and overwhelmed, and 2) distracted, tempted, and seduced by results, rewards, and egotistical handjobs.
6: questions, not answers
Another nugget from Kamal came during a conversation I had with him as he called me out for asking broad questions and expecting him to give a specific answer.
How true this is in so many walks of life!
Chances are, you’re throwing broad questions into the universe each day in hope of “the answer” magically finding you. It’s why most people diet.
It is why most go down one self-help rabbit hole after another.
We hope and pray that this new thing will finally be it.
… that it will finally give us what we need.
It’s so dumb. So pointless. Yet so understandable when you’re consumed by the hustle.
To step outside of it frees you to stop and consider The Question.
The way you play the game changes as soon as this switch flips.
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7: personal mastery
When you’re committed to the hustle, you commit to mastering what it deems worthy.
Money. Fame. Status. Power. and so on…
Yet all that ever matters is the commitment you have to yourself.
To master your self.
You are and always will be a work in progress. Never finished or complete, a malleable work of art that you forever tinker with. It’s beautiful if you allow it to be; even when it gets messy.
The [no hustle] allows this… nay, it empowers it.
8: intentional living
Today you are alive. One day, you will die.
You will be dead; past tense.
Our mortality isn’t easy to think about, especially when you have those you love. Despite this, the inevitable will happen and it will come sooner than you think. It’s cliche to say “live life in the moment” and one that isn’t even achievable most of the time.
But living with intention is.
As is giving your life purpose.
This one, fragile, imperfect life of yours is yours to own in all its inglorious ways.
When you’re stuck in the hustle, days bleed into weeks bleed into years bleed into a lifetime.
By escaping it, you give yourself the gift to slow down, look around, and appreciate what you have; who you have; and what the hell you do with the precious time you get to be conscious.
Once more, you are not the outcome. You are never the result. You are only the effort.
Life isn’t about winning. It’s about living.
And a huge aspect of living centers around movement.
Movement in the sense of growing, evolving, and transitioning through the chapters of your life.
So often we set goals and objectives. Doing so isn’t innately bad. Indeed, such focus can help you keep stepping in the right direction. Yet it’s important to not lose sight of what really matters, and that’s the continual progress you make in your ever-evolving life.
You are a work in progress, remember.
There is never a time you are complete.
10: filling your own cup
Finally, and most importantly, we need to bring the focus back to you.
You, the person most important in your world.
You, the one that deserves your love, respect, and attention.
You have to be selfish.
If you want to help, serve, and love others… you must first help, serve, and love yourself.
Fill your own cup. Each day, give yourself the tenderness you deserve.
Indeed, what you need.
Life in the hustle doesn’t allow this. It keeps you too busy. Too focussed on external forces. Too consumed by others.
You, at best, become an afterthought; something you’ll get to if you have the time.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. I hope you’re beginning to see that.
what the [no hustle] is not!
Now you know what the [no hustle] is… it’s important you appreciate what it isn’t.
Because many people hear it and jump to some naughty conclusions.
For starters, the [no hustle] isn’t anti-work or even putting in the long hours.
Whether you work fourteen-hour days or fourteen hours in a month isn’t the point. Some people feel fueled by the work they do. Doing it literally recharges their batteries; if they didn’t do it, they would become a miserable sack of sh*t.
In addition to this, your life is nothing but a series of chapters; or seasons, if you will.
Sometimes you have to work longer and harder than you would like. During other periods, you have to grind the gears simply to survive, let alone thrive.
Yet when such times happen, they have to have a purpose.
You have to be the person at the wheel, not in the passenger seat at the mercy of the hustle.
So please don’t think the [no hustle] promotes
And please don’t assume it doesn’t shine a positive light on good work ethic, ambition, perseverance, and persistence. We celebrate such traits around here.
But it all comes back to intention…
This is the issue for many because they’re not even aware they’re grinding their gears. They exist from day to day, hoping they’ll feel better if they achieve [fill in blank].
It doesn’t work like that, my friend.
All that creates is a life that will soon slip through your fingers.
If it hasn’t already…
how to escape the hustle
If you’ve reached this point and are saying … great, sign me up!
… you likely have a question you’re just dying to ask:
HOW do you escape the hustle?
Well, doing so is both easy and hard.
It’s easy because the [no hustle] awaits you right now. You can choose to take that all-important step whenever you like. Yet it’s also hard because the hustle’s all around you at all times.
Tempting you. Seducing you. Distracting you.
It isn’t going anywhere, either.
If anything, its grip will only tighten as we stride into tomorrow’s exciting world.
So to escape the hustle doesn’t involve some six-step program that solves your problems forever and always. To escape the hustle requires your continued commitment.
Which is annoying as f*ck!
But don’t worry, because the [no hustle] is here for you.
We do not have all the answers and we cannot solve all your issues. Yet we can remind you to stop, reflect, and question what the hell you’re doing with your day.
So if you haven’t already, make sure you…
✉️ sign up for the [no hustle] huddle — our weekly newsletter that brings you anti-hustling advice direct to your inbox (for free)
📺 subscribe to the [no hustle] channel — where we share regular YouTube videos designed to inspire and empower you to take continued action
💪 follow us on instagram & tiktok — for daily hustle-hacks to keep you on the right path (and to generally keep you inspired and accountable)
join the [no hustle] homestead — our free community where you can surround yourself with anti-hustling folk also tired of grinding their gears
The [no hustle] is here, not to add to the noise, but remind you to cut through it.
Because again… the hustle isn’t going anywhere.
It is here to stay and it’s mission is to consume you.
So before you move on with your day and slip back into the grind, I invite you to ask yourself these three essential questions—and to spend time thinking about them.
- What version of “success” are you currently pursuing?
- If you reach this, do you genuinely feel it will make you feel whole?
- If you could live a whole life, what would it look like?
In my personal experience, questioning what success means to you acts as a tipping point — and then honing in on what it actually looks like acts as an anchor.
Life will remain busy & hectic and you’ll continue to feel like you’re pulled this way and that. But this one exercise empowers you to take control so IT no longer controls you. I wish you luck on your journey.
Thanks for reading, and thank you for being you 🤟
hi, i’m turndog and I wrote this article … i am a writer, ghostwriter, anti-hustler & a guy on a mission to ensure you too escape the hustle — come be part of the [no hustle] movement