Hustle and bustle and toxic productivity ruin your brain


The grinding never stops, they say

One day in my life: wake up at 7 a.m. and grind. On some days, my “hectic pace” starts at 5am if I work on a morning shift that day. On other days it is 8 o’clock in the morning when I want to “sleep”. I have breakfast and start my day planning and getting work done until I get to work most afternoons. After work, I come home, do more tasks, work on different projects, and repeat the whole grind the next day.

As the name suggests, hectic culture is the social pressure to work harder, faster and harder in every area of ​​our life. It is the idolization of workaholism and the mindset that you should overwork to the point of exhaustion.

This way of life is driven by capitalism and large corporations and social media continue it. Everywhere you look, people keep posting and sharing their “rush” and “grind”. It’s not uncommon to hear things like “Sleep is for the weak” or “Never stop rushing”. This can make people feel pressured because of the ingrained notion that excessive work is success and the only way to survive in this world.

Successful entrepreneurs love to glorify this toxic culture.

When asked by a Twitter user about the number of hours it takes to work each week to “change the world,” Elon Musk, SpaceX founder, CEO, CTO, and chief designer, replied that they range from 80 to over 100 could.

Another example is Ross Simmonds, founder and CEO of Foundation, a content marketing agency. He said, “The hustle and bustle brings the dollar. The experience brings the knowledge. Perseverance brings success. “

I can’t help but believe that this culture is especially dangerous for students, and people like Musk and Simmonds set such unrealistic and unhealthy standards for the people they idolize.

A 2017 study published in Occupational Medicine suggests that longer working hours are linked to poorer mental health and increased symptoms of anxiety and depression. Long weekly working hours were also associated with reduced sleep time and increased sleep disorder. These results confirm the importance of keeping weekly working hours regularly and avoiding excessive overtime in order to reduce the risk of anxiety, depression, and insomnia.

We live in a society that praises overwork and needs to change.

According to the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Stress in America 2020 survey, Gen-Z adults ages 18-23 reported the highest levels of stress compared to other generations.

Last semester I practiced this hectic culture religiously and compared the achievements of others with my own. I struggled with being a full-time student, working 20 hours a week, and keeping up with my sideline jobs. I believed that the only way to succeed was to work constantly without taking breaks.

I started feeling guilty for resting. I knew then that I had internalized toxic productivity.

Toxic productivity is when, no matter how productive you may have been, there is always a sense of guilt when you haven’t done more. To me it looks like developing unhealthy habits, such as: B. Skipping meals, not drinking enough water, and not getting enough sleep. Anxiety attacks and breakdowns were part of my daily routine.

The hectic culture is omnipresent and drained me emotionally and physically and, above all, detached me from reality.

This philosophy is extremely harmful as it burns out other students as well.

In an Instagram poll I created last week that asked my followers if they think the hustle and bustle is toxic to them, 51 people voted yes and 13 people replied that they were fine.

James Taylor, a freshman business student at Concordia University, said he was struggling to balance his four classes, work 20 hours a week, and print on the side.

In the current world and with technologies like Facebook and Instagram, where people always seem to be comparing each other, it creates an environment where you have to work hard or I’ll be eaten, ”explained Taylor.

David Nguyen, a PhD student working on his Masters of Business Administration at Laval University, also agreed, saying that hectic culture can be avoided with the right mindset and approach.

I think the key balance is finding a balance between hectic culture and no-nonsense sloths. Both extremes are poisonous, ”suggested Nguyen. “Work at your own pace, but you have to put the work in,” he added.

As Nguyen said, it’s all about balance and taking care of yourself. Kiana Gomes, a freshman journalism student who owns a newly launched bakery business, said her hustle and bustle wasn’t toxic. According to Gomes, it actually motivates them to work harder and rest at the same time.

When asked how she managed to make and deliver chocolate bombs and cakes 12 hours a day during the Christmas break, Gomes said, “I was obviously tired and a little worried, but the rush I get from success is worth it. “

While some can handle the workload, the overall mentality is harmful. I think it is important that we understand that “hectic” is not effective, but it is dangerous to our wellbeing. Productivity isn’t bad; Exhaustion is.

Graphic by @ the.beta.lab

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