Getting My Hustle On

Lisa Messenger shares her one-word mantra for 2016



A funny thing happens in February. The yoga class that, only days ago, had you dodging the limbs of a tight pack of downward-doggers, suddenly has just three lonely participants. Queues for spirulina-infused smoothies grow shorter, we hit the snooze button three times instead of once and the pile-up of home-packed lunches in the office fridge is replaced with Thai takeout and pizza boxes. Alas, those New Year’s resolutions so carefully created at 11pm on New Year’s Eve can run a notoriously short course.

I have never been into resolutions, to be honest. I’m more of a make-a-decision-today-and-implement-straight-after kinda gal. But I am a big believer in reflection, rituals, visioning and journaling and in that space, I will always dig deep to see how I can make the road ahead more powerful, rewarding, fun and true-to-course. In the lead-up to 2016, I loved Triumph’s One Word Declaration, which asked people to sum up what the year ahead would look like in a single term.

For me, it was easy – my word for the year would be ‘hustle’.

It’s a word that’s come a long way from its ’70s dancefloor origin. No longer a disco shuffle (à la John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever), the good old hustle has come to have a whole new meaning on the start-up scene: Hard. Work. And getting where you want to go at all costs (more often than not, without a penny to spare).

Mastering the hustle means coming up with an idea bigger than yourself and pursuing the heck out of it. It means finding the back door when the front one closes (or you are shut out of it). It means getting that idea off the ground on a shoestring, calling on every contact, contra deal opportunity and crowdfunding resource at your disposal.

It means failing fast and often, always knowing that mistakes are the stepping stones to success. It means being unapologetically, unabashedly YOU in every moment, no matter how queer your quirks might be. It means never, ever giving up. As the saying goes, “you don’t lose until you quit, so don’t quit”. It means trying every angle. It means not taking no for an answer. It means: game on.

Not bad for one little word, huh? So this year I’ll be getting my hustle on and taking our Collective Hub community along for the (thrill) ride.

What’s your word for 2016? Time to pick it up, dust it off and share it around to keep yourself accountable. Now, go!




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