I know a lot of you are just starting your careers and getting your first jobs. I thought I would share an experience that changed my life and that might save you from the misery that plagues so many people.
I get a lot of questions about how to be successful. Some readers are looking to do well at work while others just want to achieve financial independence and retire early. I can relate because I asked the same questions for many years.
The response isn’t what most people are expecting. Instead of hearing how to work less and achieve more, the real secret may actually be in working more.
How the Hustle Changed my Life
Like so many people, I started my professional career in my 20s and hated every minute of it. I had three jobs before I was 32 and felt like I was trapped in the rat race. They were good jobs, all professional positions in finance, but I spent half the time thinking of what I was going to do on the weekend.
I understood that I needed something different. I couldn’t spend the next 30 years of my life hating my job.
Earning the CFA charter in 2011 was a start. It opened up my opportunities but I still didn’t know how to find the job I wanted and how to be successful.
My wife and I knew we wanted to move back to Colombia from the United States and decided to make a plan shortly after I passed the CFA exams. I started freelancing, writing investment analysis for financial advisors and institutional investors. It was tough balancing a side job with my 9-to-5 job but I knew that once we moved, we would have to depend on my freelancing income.
I worked an extra 20 or 30 hours a week on my side job to build it as quickly as possible. By the time we moved back to Colombia in 2013, I was ready with regular clients and a steady income.
But in freelancing and working for yourself, if you’re not hustling then you’re not making any money. I determined to work even harder.
That was just over two years ago. Recently, a blogger friend posted a question on Facebook asking why I hustled. I didn’t have an immediate answer.
While I started hustling out of necessity, working around the clock to support my family and get ready for our move, it wasn’t about the money anymore. I have more than enough clients and we don’t worry about money.
After thinking about it, I realized that I still hustle because I love the challenge. The hustle is a part of my life and I have never been happier. I realized that the secret to being successful and happy with your job is not working less but finding something that you love and working more.
How to find your Hustle
Are you hustling? If you aren’t working everyday like your job and your financial security depends on it, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity. You will never be as successful or as happy as you can be.
I found my hustle by breaking into freelancing but you can find yours at your traditional 9-to-5 job. It can be harder because people are not always rewarded for their hard work in a traditional job. You might have to deal with senior workers that benefit from your work simply because they have been around longer. Work hard enough though and your reward will come.
If you don’t feel like your hustle is at your current job, you first need to decide where your passion is in work. Having a hustle has to start with a passion or you’ll just burn out from the stress. Finding what you enjoy doing and making it a career will help you get through the tough days without giving up.
If you haven’t considered freelancing, check out how to freelance and some websites that connect freelancers with clients. Starting a freelance side job, you’ll work harder than you ever have but you will develop a real expertise. You’ll love the sense of pride from being great at your job and you’ll start to enjoy the challenge of working harder.
‘til next time, happy hustling
Joseph Hogue, CFA