Young Lady Hustle
Youth — the dirty word of progress. Being young is often used as an excuse to put off the possibilities of right now and place them in the hands of the future. The truth of the matter is, youth is an opportunity that doesn’t last forever, and a gift which we shouldtake hold of. Potential is usually wasted on the thought that the place for our passions is the future, but potential takes practice and the time to start practicing is now, no matter your age.
The promise of the future and the success of right now is best embodied by the word "hustle." Finding your hustle is the basis for living out your passion. The recognition of what your time is best spent working towards is a key — remember, your hustle is the reflection of what’s close to your heart, so if you don’t love it, it’s not your hustle. While you can hustle in areas that aren’t your core passion, the benefit of being young is you have time to turn your hustle into your career, rather than vice-versa.
In order to reap a fruitful hustle, you must sow into it in the form of education. What breaks your heart to see in the world? What piques your interest more than anything else? What gets you excited and puts fire in your bones? It just so happens that information resources are the powerhouse of this generation, and educating yourself on anything is extremely accessible . The way to designate how to make your mark is to know the marks that other people have already made. The goal is for another person's ceiling to be your floor.
Building your hustle starts with putting aside what you think you want right now to focus on what will benefit you in the future. If you’re passionate about it, you have potential. This can happen only through sacrifice and dedication. Sacrifice without dedication is useless and dedication without sacrifice is non-existent. Sacrifice comes through putting aside the usual to explore the unusual. What do you find yourself doing everyday? What are the constants in your life? Try implementing hustle-building into that constant. If your constant is school, think, “How can this bene fit my hustle?” If your constant is TV, maybe sacrifice an hour to work on something more long term. If your constant is social media, every time you pick up your phone or laptop to check it, either put down your phone/laptop and switch to something that helps your future or think of a way that your social media can be used for the benefit of your hustle.
Building your hustle is a process that never ends. However, there is a point in building your hustle where you start to become your hustle. Determination and action create real, tangible outcomes and benefits. But, like I said, once you start to become your hustle that doesn’t mean you just stop building it. Just because you’ve finished building a skyscraper doesn’t mean it’ll automatically be self-sufficient and fill itself with tenants. If anything your hustle gets harder to maintain as it grows. But luckily you grow with your hustle, and the greater the hustle the greater the benefits. As you become your hustle it becomes increasingly more natural to steward it. Natural doesn’t mean easy, it just means that long-term dedication to your passion will have transformed your life to the point that it becomes second-nature.
As a 14 year old, I see many of my friends waste their talent, intelligence, and passion on the illusion that they’re too young to do anything about it. I happen to be passionate about the unleashing of potential in young people; though most people label that as teaching. I also find my passion in writing and theology which give focus to my potential as a teacher. The way I found my hustle was through recognizing what excited me and proactively seeking people (ones I knew and ones I didn’t) who had experience and knowledge in the areas I was passionate about. The way I actively build my hustle concerning theology is through consistently reading the bible and learning hermeneutics from practically anyone who’s willing to teach me. As for writing, the best way to write great literature is to read great literature, so Steinbeck and Dostoevsky became my best friends. For teaching, while I do take teaching opportunities in formal atmospheres, I also like to treat my relationships, including peers and elders, as one giant teaching opportunity as well as a learning experience. After all, learning to be a teacher starts with learning to be a student. Although that does specifically help my hustle as a teacher, I’d also like to think that it’s applicable to every person’s hustle.
While being your hustle comes through building your hustle, I feel the best way to truly be your hustle is this: hustle starts with great ambition but continues through great humility.
Michaela Greco is Lady Hustle's current youngest contributor and unofficial intern. She has been homeschooled almost her entire life and has recently started her sophomore year of high school. When she isn't diligently studying her school work she can be found choreographing dances to "Daughter" songs, watching copious amounts of soccer (Come on Arsenal!), debating with old men and sassing her four older siblings.