About the Episode

Hey Outlaws, welcome to episode 69. Today we are continuing our Mindset Myth series, and as promised, we are gonna be talking about hustle.

Today on the podcast, I have sourced many of the most common clichés, girl boss quotes, statements, phrases, whatever you want to call them – these things designed to inspire us and motivate us, but to be truthful are very toxic and a little bit dangerous to our energy and mental health.

I know that many of you have probably heard these quotes and you’ve probably been inspired by them at some point (as have I), but as we start to see through that and really start to honor our time and our energy more and more, I think that most of us are probably rolling our eyes at them.

So today I’m gonna share with you a few of these toxic quotes and we’re going to talk about how they can be really detrimental to our businesses and some of the ways we can challenge and reframe this idea that we’d rather be tired all the time than broke.

Topics discussed in episode #69

Topics Discussed:

  • The toxicity of hustle culture and a lot of the girl boss quotes/beliefs we are taught to live (and die) by
  • Melanie’s journey of transitioning from her 9-5 to being self-employed and the work/life imbalance she struggled with
  • How Melanie avoided the pandemic through hustling and how this was a detriment to her mental health 
  • Why we are taught to believe that burnout is on the path to righteousness but why this actually isn’t truth 
  • The reminder that we get to decide what unconditional  success looks like for us
  • Why actually enjoying our success is key to growing a sustainable business

Connect with Melanie here:


*This is a raw and unedited transcript.  

Melanie Knights (00:06):

Hey Outlaws. Welcome to episode 69. We are continuing this mindset math series, and as promised, we are gonna be talking about hustle culture. Today. I have a, for you of these cliche kind of girl, boss, quotes, statements, phrases, whatever you wanna call them. These things designed to inspire us and motivate us, but to be truthful are very toxic and a little bit dangerous to our energy and mental health. And I know that many of you list have probably had these quotes like me. You've probably been inspired by them at some points, but as we start to see through that and really start to honor our time and our energy more and more, I think that most of us are probably rolling our eyes at them. So most of these are courtesy of pin trust. I just went on there and girl boss to see what comes up.

Melanie Knights (01:03):

And of course I was flooded with a lot of pink, which is fine, but a lot of really toxic hustle culture references. So you can see by the total of today's episode, we're focusing specifically on this idea that I'd rather be tired than broke. And I, I would rather not be either if, to be blatantly honest. I, I get the idea the premise, but I don't think that that's really benefiting anybody. And to be honest, I would rather be neither. I would rather be comfortable in both ways. I'd rather be awake and, and not broke, but you know, what's the opposite because the idea is of course, to motivate us to reach six figures in six minutes or whatever the new six figure business is. Anyway. So today I'm gonna share with you a few of these, a few of these toxic quotes, and we're gonna talk about how this can be really detrimental to our businesses. And you know, some of the ways we can challenge this, reframe it, and really escape this idea that we'd rather be tied all the time than broke.

Melanie Knights (02:26):

Okay. Of course, I'd rather be tired than broke is the name of today's episode. I hope that everyone listening understood that that is the myth. But there's also some warm. So I've written down, I'd rather hustle 24, 7 than slave nine, till five good things happen to babes who it's just like yikes. So many problems, right? So many problems. And I, I think overall the issue, whether I have issue with language or any of those things is irrelevant. The real issue here is that it breeds this idea that the only way to grow is quickly, that the only way to be successful is to grow quickly to six, seven figures, eight figures, five figure, months, whatever it is. We are told that this is the version of success. As I've said before. So many times I am not turning down a five figure month.

Melanie Knights (03:21):

I am not turning down a six figure launch or a six figure business. I'm not turning down any of those things, but I'm also hyper aware that for me, my current reality, my current relationship with time, energy, myself, my family, the way I wanna live and run my business, isn't really equipped to running a six figure business right now. That is not necessarily where I'm at. And that's because I'm really trying to claw back as much of my time. I'm trying to honor my energy the last couple of years, and really hard on all of us ever, anyone who is feeling like they need to you slowing down. I want to say that I see you. I am feeling the same way as you. And that it's absolutely. Okay. So when we see these narratives that, you know, we should be hustling 24 7 because we have our own business or that the good things only happen to babes who hustle.

Melanie Knights (04:16):

This is really toxic. It's really toxic language. And let's just talk about the first one. I'd rather hustle 24, 7 than slave nine, till five. I've seen variations of this. I've seen some big names in online business. Talk about this idea that they would rather work 90 hours a week for themselves than work 50 hours for someone else. You've seen variations of this this quote and this idea. Now I used to work in an employed environment. That was kind of what I left to become self-employed. So I went from an employed job to a self-employed position. Now I did not eat. I left my job in 2016 and not start matching or making more than my salary until 2020. So up until that point for three years, four years, maybe I was not matching my salary. My salary was not great, right? The cost of living where I, where I am is, is quite high, but also the salary is, are really.

Melanie Knights (05:20):

So the job that I did, my co my salary was not great. And my employer was not so great at recognizing people's hard work. Let's just say so, because of that, that was kind of my benchmark. It was like always, I think for most of us, if you come from an employed, you come from an employed job and you go into self-employed, what can you start to run your own business? I think for a lot of us it's to either, if you're gonna quit your job, it's to bring your side hustle up to the point where you can manage that, that transition or it's to, you know, make more money in your job in your sorry, in your business so that you can comfortably quit your nine till five. And so, for me, I was in a comfortable place that I was able to quit my nine till five and really put all my time and energy into my online business.

Melanie Knights (06:13):

If I could do it all over again, when I do it in the same way, probably not. I don't think I would. I've learned a lot since then, but at the time I just, I was really miserable. I was so depressed in my job. I felt like I was missing out on so much of my life because my job asked for so much of me, but did not compensate me in any way for the time and effort I put in. And I knew that I wanted to run my own business. I knew, wanted to do that long term. And you know, we're now what, six, seven years into this. And I'm really glad that, you know, I kept at it. I'm really, there'd been so many times when I wanted to quit, but when I first started, I, when I first started full-time, self-employment, my relationship with time was horrific.

Melanie Knights (06:57):

And I was, have always been pretty good at time management, but there's this idea when you transition from like nine to five, where everything is laid out for you, you start work at this time. This is when you take your lunch break. This is when your day finishes. When you have that all laid out for you and you've spent most of your life having that dictated to you, all of a sudden you are in control. Well, my time management was horrific and I would just lose track of the whole day. I would be, you know, I'd sit down at 10:00 AM just to write something and it would get to like three, 4:00 PM. And I hadn't had a shower. I was still in my pajamas. I know that so many people can resonate with that. And it became really, really apparent to me that this was not healthy.

Melanie Knights (07:41):

This was not the way I wanted, this was not as glamorous as everyone had made out, like working in your PJs is really comfortable. And it's really great, but it's also not the way I wanted to be doing things every single day. And so I would be constantly running out of time, even though I had to run my business on the side, in like, you know, three hours a day, I now had what an entire day available to me. And I was constantly running out of time. I was constantly publishing newsletters. Last minute, I would be writing blogs on the day that I wanted to post them. Everything was kind of just chasing each other. And you know, this is the reality of when we step into this environment and we're told that it's okay to hustle 24 7. We kind of say, okay, I'm gonna do that.

Melanie Knights (08:30):

We, we accept it. And we say, that's what we're gonna do. And there are so many other things that can happen when we leave that environment. If we're not fully prepared for working from home, or we are not fully prepared, we maybe we don't have, you know, systems and things set up in our businesses. I certainly didn't. It can become a bit of a mess, but for me as well, I was so deep and entrenched in business coaching culture at that time that I would believe anything I had, I would believe that you can always make more money. I, again, I do. I believe that sometimes do I struggle with it also? Yes. So I think that there are always going to be those black and there's gonna be gray areas in these quotes, but, you know, I would rather not hustle 24 7. And I always say, now I remember hearing this quite a few years ago.

Melanie Knights (09:21):

I work full-time, even though I don't work nine till five, I still work full time. Even though I don't work nine till five, because for me, my business is only one part of what I do. It's only one part of my work being a mom who, you know, I work around my son's school day. I take him to school. I make sure he has everything he needs. I pick him up. I take him to his classes and his clubs and his everything else. Like that's also a job as far as I'm concerned. And so at the end of the day, yes, I do work full time, but I don't work nine till five. So the next, the next toxic quit that I found is a good things, happen to babies who hustle. Well, just ignore the language part of this that I struggle with, but, you know, good things only happen if we hustle.

Melanie Knights (10:05):

Is that really true? I think a lot of good things have happened to me personally in the last year or so, and I haven't been hustling, you know, good things did happen when I hustled. I'll be honest in 20, I hustled so hard. I completely avoided what was going on outside. I mean, not a lot was really happening outside, but I avoided the experience of the pandemic and COVID by hustling. I went deep into hustle and my business grew rapidly. I'm not gonna deny that. But at the same time, what I quickly realized was everything I had was not what I wanted. I didn't wanna be working all this time very quickly. I said to myself, how am I ever gonna take a holiday ever again? How am I ever gonna take time off? Because like my business grew, I brought in people to help me.

Melanie Knights (10:52):

I hired a team, many of who still work with me today, but it was like, I got to that point, right? I didn't know how to shift or scale as it may be. And I could have continued scaling. I could have found out how to do this, but I knew in my heart that that was not what I wanted. This was not going in the direction I had actually planned. I was doing job. I was running an agency that I hadn't actually saw to run. And so, yeah, good things can happen when we hustle, but also bad things can happen when we hustle. Good things can happen when we slow down, bad things can happen. When we slow down, we have no control of that. Hustling has no control over what happens to us, but hustling is a really, really fast path to burnout. And I talked about this recently in an email newsletter.

Melanie Knights (11:41):

And I think so often we tell ourselves that we have to work harder, right? We've, we've talked about this before, but this idea that we have to work harder, that we have to hustle that, then we will be worthy of success. You know, because we see so many of these coaches and big names in online business who have that kind of origin story, you know, inevitably they kind of did all these things. They did it kind of messy and they did it scrappy. And then they, you know, they got to six figures and then they burned out. That's inevitably everyone's story. And the thing I, the thing I struggle with about this burnout story is it breeds this idea that burnout is something that we all have to experience and that we deserve burnout. And that burnout then leads us to this path of like righteousness.

Melanie Knights (12:34):

I don't really believe that. I think that most of us experience burnout because that's what society has conditioned us to believe is the path it society has told, especially women and people who identify as women, that we have to work as hard as everyone else that we have to ignore. We need, we have to, you know, we have to manage everybody else and we have to ignore what we need so that we can get to where we want. You know, we have to do it all. We have to have it all. We have to do everything and we have to do it looking great. That is the narrative. And because we have grown up with that narrative, because that's the narrative that's been, we've been told over and over and over again in online bit business, it's very similar. And it also means that we think that we have to hustle and continue hustling.

Melanie Knights (13:21):

And that the only way we deserve to be successful is by reaching burnout and that when we reach burnout, that's like an indication that we have made it. I just, it's just not true. And we can avoid burnout and I've burnt out. I've burnt out from certain tasks or certain parts of my business, right? The environment and the external world over the last couple of years has burned me out time and time again. But recognizing when we are experiencing low times of energy, low, low energy or low creativity, or we're lacking inspiration, like that's okay, it's okay to experience those things. And pretending that we don't pretending that, you know, we are too inspired to be tired. Like I, I, I just, no, no, we, there are times when I'm tired and I'm still really inspired. Like this is the thing, because the things we are human beings and we have so many layers to ourselves and we're all different.

Melanie Knights (14:30):

So there are gonna be times when I'm really tired, but I have so many thoughts and I have so many ideas of things I wanna create, but I can't actually do it. I can't put it out into the world because I need to rest. I could force myself to do it. That's what I used to do. That's probably what many of you have also done? We've kind of forced our way through of, no, we must carry on. Hustling must keep pushing to achieve something. And it inevitably leads to burnout now. And this happens from a very young age, right? This happens from a very, very young age. So, you know, good things happen to babes who hustle cool, but so bad things. And we'll just, we'll just put a line in that one that, and then the, let me speak properly today. The, the title of today's episode, I'd rather be tired than broke.

Melanie Knights (15:23):

I'd rather, you know, I'd rather not be either if I can help it, but you know, it doesn't signify whether I'm successful. And, and I think this is the other thing that we get to decide what success looks for ourselves as individuals. I can't say enough. Success is unconditional success. Shouldn't have conditions on it. They shouldn't be placed these conditions of like, I have to have six figures and then I'm successful. I have to have this car and then I'm successful. You can have goals, right? Don't get it twisted. You can have goals. You can have a goal to reach that income level. You can have a goal. I wanna buy this car. This is my dream car. I love having this car, but let's not forget that the journey is a thing that's gonna get you there. Let's not forget that the journey is supposed to be enjoyed as well.

Melanie Knights (16:08):

I know that sounds like such a cliche, but it's true because if we don't enjoy the journey of getting there, if we don't learn and have experiences and live and do all those things, when we get to that goal, we're just like, oh, that, that, and what right. And what, and a really good example of this is, or at least for me, a personal example of this is how this also relates to like weight loss or, and diet culture. So just trigger wanting, I'm gonna talk a little bit about my own experience with weight loss, diet, culture, body image. I used to think about this a lot in terms of my weight loss goals and how I would never be satisfied, not to, you know, like Hamilton that I never be satisfied. You got a little bit of singing in there. I would never be satisfied.

Melanie Knights (17:00):

I was never satisfied with whatever goal I set for myself. Every time I reached that goal, I lowered, I lowered the way that I wanted to be. I moved the goalposts. Well, if I'm constantly moving the goalposts, I never had any time to actually stay anywhere and experience what it was like to be that size, that weight I never maintained. And this is, this is still to this day. Something I've realized that I have struggled with I'm, I'm unpacking a lot of my body image stuff in the moment, but this is something that I've realized is that most of my life I've been trying to lose weight, or I've been gaining weight, not out of necessarily choice, but I've been gaining weight maintenance, which I feel like is this, this thing that if you've ever been to a diet club or any kind of weight loss experience maintenance, is this like glorified thing where, oh, she's in maintenance? Well, I don't think I really ever experienced that. And that's in itself really toxic that I never felt like I could maintain anything I had. I always wanted to push myself to work harder and not in a positive way. I know there are, you know, athletes push themselves to be the best. That's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about never understanding that where I was at was okay, that I was good enough that I was worthy, that I was successful, that I was all the things that I didn't believe I would was.

Melanie Knights (18:31):

And this is the same in online business. If we constantly move the goal posts, if we never just stop, pause, slow down and say to ourselves, I'm gonna really allow myself to experience what it's like to have this business at this level. If we are constantly telling ourselves that we have, have to grow, that we have to hustle that we don't actually get to experience a six figure business or a, our first thousand dollars month that we don't even learn how to maintain that. I think it's that much harder to grow sustainably because inevitably once we hit a certain benchmark, we are taught to keep, you know, what do we do now to keep growing? And I don't necessarily think there's anything wrong with that. I think that for many businesses, that is the model they're going to follow, but I think there's also something really beautiful and something really energetic about recognizing that you've hit this benchmark.

Melanie Knights (19:28):

Let's replicate it right big cuz if you can replicate it and it may not even be a financial goal, it may be anything in your business, but replicating it again and again and again. And seeing that you continue to get these results really proves that what you're doing is working for you for your audience, for your communities, for people, for your business, whatever it is now, take it one next step further, right? You can then start to look at, okay, this is something I've done. 3, 4, 5 times. I don't know how many times you choose to do it. This is something I've repeated. It has worked. What would be the next step? What's the next logical step for me? And a good, another example of this is launching. You've probably had me talk about launching a lot here on the show. I used to hate launching with a passion.

Melanie Knights (20:19):

It wasn't launching fault. It was the strategies and tactics I'd been taught. And when I launched this podcast back in 2020, I decided to, well, I was encouraged to do a really long launch. And initially I was terrified. I was like, oh my God, I'm gonna burn out within like five minutes. This is gonna be exhaustive. Actually the complete opposite happened. And I spent months looking back at that launch saying to my team, we need to figure out how to replicate this in my business, because it was the most enjoyable launch. It was effortless. I know I wasn't, I wasn't launching something like that was gonna be paid for, but I didn't think that was the, I didn't think that was the deciding factor of why the launch worked. I realized that it's because I gave myself more time. I didn't have to talk about it every day.

Melanie Knights (21:06):

For five days, I could talk about it two or three times a week for four weeks. So everyone who really wanted to be paying attention knew about the show. They knew what to expect. They knew what was coming. And then when it launched, we had a really great kind of launch out of continued to grow thrive from there. So eventually in 2021 over replicated this in my business, when I launched the outlaw channel and I continued to replicate that launch process with the Luna journal, with planning by the moon, I did it with my planning workshops. I did it with small business. Now, now I've continued to replicate this launch process every single time it works for me. And that doesn't mean it's gonna work for everybody. But that launch process has worked time and time again. And the reason it's worked is because I've replicated it.

Melanie Knights (21:54):

I've kept trying. I'm like, right. It worked the first time. Let's try it a second time. It worked again and now is the time for me to look at ways in which I can explore other launches and how I can also really grow between launches. So it doesn't have to look like hustling all the time. It doesn't have to look like exponential growth every year or every six months. It can do. But if you are in a phase in your business right now with the idea of hustling, the idea of slaving, the idea of being tired is ex is just not appealing. That's okay. And also recognizing that we go through seasons, we go through these cycles, we've talked about cycles before on the show. We all experience these seasons and cycles. And so if right now you're in a season of stillness, you're in a season of like maintenance and wanting to just see what happens in your business, do that.

Melanie Knights (22:49):

And it doesn't matter how many girl boss quotes you see, or how many people are telling you that you should be striving for six figures or this, that, and the third you've gotta do what's right for you. And so if you are in a phase in your business where growth is the plan, that's also okay, but just remember to honor yourself, honor your energy honor, your needs recognize what you need from every layer of your business so that you can continue to grow and feel successful without all of these conditions on yourself, because you are already so successful. You are so much more powerful than you even realize and everything you want and need is available, but it doesn't mean you have to have it all right. Now you can work towards some of those things right now you could work towards some of those things in the future. And the great thing about running your own business is that things will evolve and you don't know whether those things will still be important to you in six months time, a year's time and so on.

Melanie Knights (23:47):

So a little bit of a recap this month. So far, we've talked about three different mindsets. We started off with comfort zones. Last week, we talked about boundaries and today I wanted to focus on hustle culture. And I know that this conversation has probably gone in a few different directions, but I hope that it's really reminded you, that you don't have to fall into these labels, these stereotypes that have come out in online business, and whether you identify as a girl boss or not. Absolutely. Okay. But just remember that sometimes these quotes and phrases can actually be really toxic. And so just kind of take them with a grain of salt. Is it grain of salt or a pinch of salt? I don't know, take it with salt or don't. And just remember to really recognize where you're at self order, self inquiry, be curious and allow yourself to grow on your own terms.

Melanie Knights (25:00):

Okay. That's it from me for this week. Outlaws, thank you so much for joining me for today's episode. Next week, we're gonna be reaching episode 70. And next week we're gonna be tying up this mindset myth series. And we're gonna be talking about, we're gonna be kind of rounding up is gonna be a little bit of a, a miscellaneous. Some of those quotes and saying is that I didn't really have a full episode on, so we're gonna talk about progress and not perfection. We're gonna talk about mindset being everything. And one of what used to be one of my favorite quotes, which is she believed she could. So she did. So stay tuned for next week's episode. We're gonna dig into some of these final cliches. Some of these final mindset myths, these things that are designed to inspire us and motivate us, but are actually very road toxic.

Melanie Knights (25:50):

And as I've been saying, if you have any episode ideas, any topics that you would love me to cover, please head over to Instagram, entrepreneurial underscore Outlaws, come and give us a follow, say hello. We post every week to remind you of new episodes wrap. We always post a little audio clip and you'll also see me post reels and some content in between that time as well. But please come over and say hello. And also let me know if you have any topic ideas or if you would like to be a guest head to our link in our bio and fill in the guest form. Okay. So until next week, Outlaws