The Hustle Is A Lie

By Chris 5

Have you ever read “Once A Runner” by John L. Parker? Probably not. I’ll tell you the story: boy runs a lot. Does okay. Finds a mentor. Mentor says, “Run a lot more.” Boy runs his legs off. Breaks the four-minute-mile mark.

It’s a beautifully-written book by an author who never ran a four-minute mile.

Unfortunately, many runners read the book as a training manual. They believe the way to run faster is simply to run more. It’s not true.

The secret to running a four-minute-mile, as described by Roger Bannister (the first man to actually RUN a four-minute mile) is interval training. Bannister ran sets of 400s to train, keeping his intensity up, spending his energy wisely.

I work with hundreds of gym owners. Every one is a hard worker: they expect to get up early and work until dark. They embrace the work. Most believe (as I once did) that simply outworking everyone else will bring success.

It’s not true.

The hustle isn’t the goal.

The goal is the goal.

More time off is the goal. Paying off your house is the goal. Playing with your kids is the goal.

What’s wrong with a strong work ethic? Nothing…unless it stops you from achieving what’s really important.  In other words, sacrificing intensity for volume.

Let me give you an example that I hear all too often:

“I coach eight classes every day. I’m at the gym from 5am until 8pm. But I don’t have time to do what you’re telling me to do! And I don’t have the money to pay anyone to help me.”

After we calculate the value of the gym owner’s time, it’s clear they’re working too much for too little. In some cases, they’re running classes for 2-3 clients…for less than they’d earn at McDonald’s. Sometimes they’re paying a coach $20 for a class worth $15.

In that example–far too common–the gym owner is really gym-owned. They’d do better to work at Wal-Mart and run free workouts in the park on the weekends!

“Embracing the hustle” can be a harmful strategy, because it can prevent you from doing the things you SHOULD be doing. It’s easy to fool ourselves into believing “more work” is the same as “better work,” that volume = intensity. It’s not true.

Do your bathrooms need to be clean? Yes. Cleaned by you? No. You’re probably holding your business, your staff AND your clients back if you’re performing every little role in the box.

Work expands to fill the time allocated to it. Stop wasting that time.

Here’s a momentum-building 10-Hour CEO strategy to get you started:


Download the 10-Hour CEO Guide

Episode 33: War Stories with Vaughn Vernon | Two Brain Coaching

[…] In “Coach’s Confessional”, I talk about being proud of the wrong things instead of those that DO matter. Further reading: The Hustle Is A Lie. […]

Episode 33: War Stories With Uncle Vaughn | Two-Brain Business

[…] In “Coach’s Confessional”, I talk about being proud of the wrong things instead of those that DO matter. Further reading: The Hustle Is A Lie. […]

Episode 60: Managing Work-Life Balance – Two-Brain Business

[…] of interest: The Hustle Is A Lie, by Chris […]

Episode 119: Founder – Two-Brain Business

[…] are going to be grinding but you won’t be doing just for the sake of doing it. See my article: The Hustle is a Lie. Anyone who has been in business for a while knows that constant hustle is unsustainable and the […]

Episode 134: “Clockwork”, with Mike Michalowicz – Two-Brain Business

[…] Mike said that he doesn’t like the “grind” and “hustle” mentality that many business speakers push now. I agree (here’s our post called “The Hustle Is A Lie.”) […]

Leave a reply