Are you wasting or hustling your quarantine?

By Alyssa Jiggetts, Staff intern

The phrase “free time” is something that we would have wished for two months ago, but now is something now that we may hate to have.

Now that self-isolation enforces us to essentially keep away at home at our own expense, many of us are lost at what to do with the abundance of time on our hands.

So consider “hustle culture.”

This is a very controversial topic. Some argue that constant hard work pays off, and some argue that constant work mentality is too toxic to maintain.

Hustlers rant that being productive with your time by exercising, learning a new skill or starting 10 side hustles to make some cash is the only way to go because if you don’t, then you’re wasting your time.

Anti-hustlers argue that it’s fine to take a step back from the stress and just spend this time relaxing and enjoying simple things that we may have not been able to before.

Hearing and seeing all these rampant posts about being productive or just relaxing honestly made me even more stressed about how I should spend my time.

I ended up feeling a sense of both. If I wasn’t doing anything other than being productive, then I was wasting my life away. Yet if I pushed myself to learn and do too many things at once, I felt too burned out to even continue.

I ended up learning the hard way that being sucked in too deep into the hustle culture made me forget what made me enjoy what I was doing. However, on the flip side, I decided to compensate this with “self-care” and put off anything and everything productive, thus causing myself more harm than good.

This made me finally come to where I am at currently, which is at what point does productivity become overwhelming, and at what point does this cycle of self-care really start to harm you.

Too much work causes more damage than the initial end point of gratification, but too little causes those missed opportunities of growth.  

At what point is the future gratification of success worth more than a current state happiness?

To the many teenagers rushing to the hustle of the game of college, or the adults over working to that next success, the answer isn’t and will never as simple as black and white. That gray area of balance is simply one that can’t be answered by me, or by anyone else who preaches on self-care. The answer simply doesn’t exist, because only you can decide how you dictate and see the means of life.

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