The age old questions of the timeline of success usually consist of uncertainty or impatience. They stem from the uncertainty of your progress, or your need for instant results. Are you working hard enough to get what you want? Are you working too hard… Or are you not working hard enough?
On top of all that, how the hell can you know which one applies to you? Well, this article has some answers, because thankfully I’ve found an excellent balance that works for me, through much trial and error. I’ll share the secrets of working just the right amount, never slacking, and making real progress.
The Difference Between Working Too Hard & Not Working Hard Enough
Over my entrepreneurial career, I have consistent battles with my work output, my leverage so I can measure maximum results.
In the past, I’ve definitely pushed it to the limit, thereby finding the ideal balance of hours in, and value produced.
My trials and errors would consistently include intense periods of 18-hour days. Burnout. Physical sickness.
On the other extreme, I’ve spent lazy days on the beach, reading, vacation and work-free international travels.
Not surprisingly, my most lenient and relaxing days have been the times I was making the most money (on autopilot). On these days, I’d wake up checking apps / KPIs (key performance indicators) to see how much I made the night before.
These days would include long days of reading, working on my body and diet, or simply taking some time to relax.
As you might know already, I come from the United States. In the U.S., many of the social media leaders and brands encourage work, hustle, and grind. Every successful entrepreneur knows how to simply put in the time.
But at what cost?
The Ambitious Millennial’s Dilemma
As you also might know, it’s extremely hard for me to relax, because I always want to make progress and build. I have somewhat of a work guilt anxiety if I’m letting time slip by without investing it.
And so on…
You want to get to the point where can’t just stop what you’re doing, because:
a) it’s so fun to progress and get results
b) you have an enormous vision and you’re not there yet, and
c) you become extremely uncomfortable when not taking action
This hungry and ambitious nature is healthy, and gave me the opportunity to create my ideal lifestyle in a short time. I’ve made the money to travel the world and invest in my own companies. It helps me pay for things like nice food, advertising, shelter (and everything else) since I support myself 100%.
There is a delicate balance to everything in life. Like many subjects, the best answer is somewhere in the middle.
Over this post today, you will see the options that lie in front of you when it comes to hustle. You’ll know how much to put in, and understand it doesn’t just come down to the hours. It’s not the hours you put in the work, but the work you put in the hours.
Pay close attention as we build you a custom work strategy from the ground up. Today is the first day of the rest of your steady, proven routine for success and work balance.
Are You Working Hard Enough? How to Create & Use Leverage
When I first began my entrepreneurial journey, I had all the characteristics of a hard worker.
That means exactly what it says: I was a hard worker, not a smart worker.
I had the black coffee, was steam-rolling on work at 5 a.m., and would focus on tons of things throughout the day. I blew through every single thing myself and would never think of hiring help.
The bulk of my work was uploading products to my first website. It meant that I was contacting new suppliers, going through thousands of lines of product spreadsheets, and writing copy… by myself.
My style was to doggedly hustle through it all, with no leverage, little strategy, and definitely no outside help.
Little did I know, with the types of work I was doing, Filipino V.A.s and freelancers would’ve 10x’d my output, and would’ve been well within my profit margins.
Back then, I unknowingly held a deadly mix of not knowing my options, and being complacent due to my hardhead nature.
Be aware of this on your journey because it does more harm than good.
The Hardest vs. the Smartest Workers in the World
Anyway, in a recent post I show you how some of the hardest workers in the world are the poorest. Are you working hard enough to become one of the poorest? Are you working too hard, in hopes of becoming rich, but really digging yourself a bigger hole?
Only when you go to the top, do you find that the absolute richest men on earth are the ones who work the least.
Does this mean jobless laymen can laze around doing nothing and get rich?
Don’t be foolish.
It just means that the ones who’ve beaten the game of money (billionaires) figure out how to leverage time and human capital.
They hire others to work for them. They own stocks in massive, churning businesses. Or they’re looking invest in themselves, or their businesses, within their circles of competence, as Buffett says.
They save money, to invest even more on the regular.
Look at the Forbes 500 and you’ll find the majority of those men and women are investors.
There’s a huge lesson hidden in plain sight.
“Are you working hard enough?” is not the right question.
“Are you leveraging enough people, and investing your resources in the right things?” is a more adequate question for massive success.
Working Too Hard: A Serious Warning for the Hustlers
Many thought leaders and business influencers might roll their eyes at this, especially in the west.
Working too hard? No such thing. Not possible. GRIND, HUSTLE, DON’T BE WEAK, #TEAMNOSLEEP.
This is a real concern that needs to stop perpetuating. One of my best friends almost died from a collapsed lung, from the pressures of too much work and hustle! Hear his story here.
Chinese workers have literally been dying at their desks. Studies show that 1600 deaths a DAY occur from this alone! This doesn’t even speak for all the factory conditions, and unrealistic expectations of that lifestyle. People are literally dying at their desks, struggling to handle the insane work loads.
The Japanese have a specific word in their language for this: Karōshi.
So, to the people who think nobody ever dies from working too hard: you are mistaken.
Be extremely careful with how you spend your energy at work.
Whether you are an entrepreneur, intrapreneur, or an employee, it applies.
Will you die from working too hard any time soon? Probably not, because it’s very unlikely.
Most of these people were dying from a combination of heart attacks, lack of sleep, appetite loss, and more. These workers would push their bodies to the max and never let up on the gas, which is a very extreme combination.
That said, working too hard is a real thing, and there are certain things to watch out for.
– Lao Tzu
Not Working Hard Enough? How to Fix A Lazy or Misguided Temperament
We’ve now shown that working too hard is definitely possible, and you should avoid it most of the time. Sometimes it is necessary to put in stints of grind, especially when you’re behind. So let’s jump into the possibility that you could be not working hard enough.
I’d actually argue that most people in the world are not working hard enough on their passion. Most people are likely working too hard on something, only to barely pay the rent.
Does this sound like you? Are you working hard enough on a real mission, instead of just covering the bills?
Millions of people are simply stuck in the system, only scraping by.
Most don’t have an issue of not working hard, they just misdirect their energy and focus to projects that don’t serve them. They hustle for somebody else. They work extremely hard to only scrape by.
In reality, all that effort and toil could reroute to developing their freedom plan.
Here’s how to know you’re not working hard enough, or are misdirecting your efforts:
- You are not devoting time every single day to sharpening you skills
- You spend more time in leisure than you do thinking, plotting, strategizing, and working on your main plan or business
- Your days are aimless, drifting about from idea to idea
- You can’t wait to come home to essentially do nothing after your job (or whatever pays the bills)
- Overall, you are sick of your own lack of direction
You can fix these serious issues with a little bit of intentional planning and stark realness with yourself.
How to Fix Laziness Forever, Beat Procrastination & Motivate Yourself (Effortlessly) Every Day
Here’s a quick paradigm that you can let sink in for maximum joy & long-term wealth.
You can fill every single day of your life with a meaningful purpose.
This purpose can wake you up out of bed, keep you on a straight path to success, and improve other people along the way. You’ll wake up hungry, motivated, and driven.
So how do you begin creating your life purpose?
First off, it must derive from your main strengths. These are natural inclinations that you have already, and things you’re already pretty decent at.
You will want to combine your natural strengths, with your main, primal and pressing desires. This potent blend of achievement will keep you searching for what you want, while giving you every advantage to achieve it.
Not everybody will pursue desires, with bulletproof resolve; in fact most will not. Most will spend this time coming up with unnecessary excuses as to why they cannot ever do what they want.
Ironic isn’t it?
That these people can channel the same exact energy, with the same exact intensity, for what they don’t want? And as the self-fulfilling prophecy of the universe states, as you wish, so shall it be.
They create exactly what they say they don’t want, because in reality, it is exactly what they want, deep down.
A Warning From Personal Experience About Speaking Only Your Desires Into Existence
This is why it’s vitally important to only speak into existence what you do want.
Do not pay attention or dwell on what you are scares you, or what you hope will not happen. This is counterproductive and will not help you achieve what you want.
Power and energy, supercharged with emotion turn into physical reality.
Be extremely careful as to where you direct your efforts.
Avoid the bitter trap of working too hard to create what you do not wish to happen, and not working hard enough to create what you do wish to happen..
That is a scary trap to find yourself at the bottom of.
I’m warning you. I’m only sending you this warning, because I’ve been there, looking up. It’s not fun, looking back to see the unnecessary mass of time and pile of mistakes you left in your wake.
But it isn’t too late. In the next section, you’ll learn the characteristics of ambitious, successful people, and, well… the exact opposite.
See which category you fall into, and how to correct your weaknesses and dial your main strengths below.
Are You Working Hard Enough, Or Working Too Hard? – How to Find Out Right Now
Lazy and ambitious people have completely different vocabularies, habits, thoughts, actions, and values.
As in… totally different.
As a matter of fact, they are diametrically opposite.
Here’s a general comparison of the ambitious people of the world, who conquer and achieve, take risks and prosper, and eventually build the lifestyles they want:
The Ambitious Amongst Us:
- Usually get up at a specific time each day
- Have a normal routine they go through for work
- Eat healthy, treat their body well and maximize energy
- Build plans and strategies for the future
- Focus on value, contribution, success of others
- Talk to themselves and their circle with influence and positivity
- Work every single day on what they see in their minds
- Master their mindset, their beliefs, and their business
- Focus on what they want and are good at
- Delegate, partner, or get assistance with things they don’t want to do
Now, on the other hand…
The Lazy Amongst Us:
- Sleep until whenever
- Have unstructured and non-productive days
- Eat whatever, laze around physically, and don’t build respectable physiques
- Have no clear goals or guidelines to shoot for
- Focus on consumerism, getting the best for nothing, lack of success
- Hang out with others who bring them down, and don’t boost other people up
- Don’t work on what they want, or at best work at unfulfilling careers
- Let their mind take them over, destroy their self-belief, so they don’t try and create a business or wealth
- Do everything themselves or never finish anything
So how many of the points on the list make you cringe or take pride in what you do? Still confident? Are you working hard enough, really?
Navigate the above list and make a focused effort to fix as many of the points as you can, so you can get ahead. The sooner you can start getting your main habits in line, getting the overview for the 80/20 actions, the quicker you can crush it in business.
Working Hard, Working Smart & Working Enough: The Perfect Balance Revealed
Different levels of activity are required for different pursuits.
However, if you look at the top successful winners in business, athletics, or intellectual work, you will find they bust their tails. Are you working hard enough according to their standards? If they were in the room, would you be embarrassed?
There’s no shortcut for work, and if you want to cut your learning curve, you’ll have to study the greats.
Most of the work you do in life will need to err on the side of working too hard. If you’re lazy or aimless, you will have a very hard time even completing one task.
The way you do one thing in life is the way you do everything, so understand how you can create consistency across all actions.
Perhaps you’re working too hard and you need to scale it back, or not working hard enough and need to scale it up.
Use this as a guide. Come back to it, learn from it, and get way ahead of your peers in a short time.
Remember, one of your ideas, executed superbly, will prove more effective than 100 ideas from your peers that are never act upon.
Remember that. Most people never start.
So, leave a comment today and let me know. Are you working hard enough? Too hard?
Let me know what you need more assistance with.