Why I Hustle – Brett Kelly

Why I Hustle

Lots of really smart people suggest that, from time to time, we all stop and ask ourselves why we’re doing what we’re doing. Despite my somewhat-infrequent practice, I’m a fan of this habit. Often times, I’ll get mired down and spread thin with tasks, obligations, and responsibilities and, in an effort to simplify things (or out of sheer overwhelm) I’ll go over the “whys.”

My life is in transition. As of a couple of months ago, I’m single for the first time in nearly a decade and a half and, as a result, many areas of my life are very much in flux. It’s been a hellish couple of years, if I’m honest, but I’m coming out of it a very different person from who I was before.

(Suffering has a way of shaping you and your perspective.)

So, during this season of life, I’m working hard to figure out what my next “normal” will look like. I know vaguely how I’d like it to look, but only so much of it depends on me and what I do. Even still, I’m faced with a wonderful opportunity to make informed, intentional steps toward the life I want.

For now, I’m hustling. I’m not sure I’ve ever worked this hard before. I’m not trying to buy a boat or work from the frickin’ beach or any of that crap. I’m trying to get back to sea level and, I hope, find a sturdy piece of something buoyant I can hang onto while I keep swimming.

As for the “whys…”

  • I hustle because I want to build a better life for my kids.
  • I hustle because I hope it brings a sense of stability and predictability back to my life.
  • I hustle because I don’t want to work for somebody else ever again.
  • I hustle because, eventually, it will probably give me a less bitter taste of that weird “freedom” thing everybody talks about.
  • I hustle because nobody is going to hustle for me.
  • I hustle because I like me better when I do.
  • I hustle because it begets hustle.

That last one is key.

Momentum is a lot like trust: hard to build and super easy to destroy.

Most of the time, mentally skimming that list is enough to keep me at my desk when I want to go to sleep, have a drink, or just give up for a little while. Sometimes, it’s not. Either way, better days are ahead. I just need to not stop.

Thanks for indulging me. Let’s get back to work.

Oh, and if you’re curious, the thing I’m grinding on at the moment is the next version of Evernote Essentials. I’m adding a ton of new content and there even may be a few surprises. Plug in your email address below and I’ll let you know when it’s ready (which will be very soon).

(Image courtesy of Jan Fidler)

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Been a fan of yours for a while now. I’ve been slowly implementing different parts of Evernote Essentials for years. (Sometimes successfully, sometimes, less so.)

Whatever is happening in your life, know that there is always a pocket of folks in your “audience” who are pulling for you, and rooting for your success.

It’s satisfying to see someone be successful, fulfilled and transformed in their life and work. If there is anything I can do personally (other than keep buying your stuff, which I will likely continue to do…) never hesitate to ask.

Cheers and Best Wishes,
Kevin Benson


    I appreciate the encouragement, support, and kind words, Kevin!


Thank you for this post. It really hit home with me as I come up on the year anniversary of being cast out into a life of chaos. It does not matter the details as chaos is always chaos and flux is always flux it seems. You have added another voice to my own “lets do this” and given me something to ponder/execute in “hustle begets hustle”.

Nicholas Scalice

Great post, Brett. I appreciate and respect your hustle. Keep it up!

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