Initially, those two terms seem contradictory to me: simple living & the hustle. And while it is true that they can coexist, they can even be complimentary.
I don’t have a personal official definition of simple living, but other people do:
- Tsh Oxenreider calls it “living holistically with your life’s purpose”
- Joshua Becker says for him it is, “the intentional promotion of the things we most value and the removal of everything that distracts us”
I really like both of these definitions.
One thing to note: both of these definitions assume you know what you value most and/or what your purpose is in life. Even though I love talking about life purpose I don’t think I really found out what mine was until recently (with the knowledge that it can, and probably will, change with different seasons of life).
I’ve done some hustling in the past, like the time I got my 4-year education degree in 2.5 years. There was a lot of hustle in those 2.5 years but we knew life was going to be busy whether it was 2.5 years or 4, so why not get it done sooner?
Living simply can actually help in periods of hustle.
If you have less stuff, you need to clean and organize less which means more time for the hustle. If you have a schedule that is pretty simple and sparse, guess what? More time for hustle. Less buying of stuff? More money to invest in the hustle.
I think hustle has gotten a bit of a bad rap. In my mind, if you are hustling towards your dreams or purpose, that is usually a good hustle.
When I’m hustling towards something I enjoy, I generally enjoy most of the process (there will always be some things that aren’t fun but getting through those tasks often takes us to the enjoyable part) so hustle isn’t a bad thing, it can be an positive time which ends up taking me closer towards the life I want to live.
You can even flip it around, the hustle can often show you areas of your life where you need to live more simply. When you start to hustle, take a look at the stuff you drop first, certain relationships, activities you were involved in, commitments you had, if those are the first things to go, do you really want them in your life to begin with?
The hustle is good at pointing out areas that you can simplify.
The hustle has taught me that my main priorities right now are God, my family and reaching out to and living in my community. Not that I don’t care about other things, but they are easier to put aside during times of hustle and when this phase of hustling is done I’ll need to ask myself if I truly want to add back in everything I dropped, or would I be better off without certain things?
I’m in a (self-imposed) season of hustle again and do you know what? It feels good.
It feels like I am getting closer to the life I want to live.
It feels like I am doing the work that God wants me to.
And my choices to live a simpler life are helping me have the time to hustle.
Do you think simple living and the hustle can coexist and benefit each other?
Are you in a season of hustle right now?