BY: DANIELLE K. LAMBERT, SNOUTSCHOOL.COM FOUNDER
I need to apologize to veterinary medicine for something. For the majority of my entrepreneurial journey, I’ve glorified “the grind” and “the hustle.”
Any time I felt like being lazy, I heard Drake in my head rapping, “I don’t take naps. Me and the money are way too attached to go and do that.”
My workaholic mindset didn’t come from listening to Drake rap. Unfortunately, we aren’t close enough for him to impact me to that extent.
Growing up watching my dad work 24/7 at his vet clinic? That had a powerful impact.
I saw clients celebrating him for his consistent availability to them.
He stayed late for pet owners in need, and he texted them on weekends.
These actions earned him the love of the community and constant accolades. They are also the behaviors every therapist will tell you are bad for your mental health. Despite this, my dad continues to act this way to this day.
The catch? He’s happy functioning like that. I thought I was the same way. We share quite a bit of DNA, after all.
When I started Snout School, I thought I needed to work that much. I was sure I had to always be that available. I figured I had to hustle constantly to succeed. After all, I didn’t even have to leave my bed to get on my laptop and work.
Even more, I thought I had to do that in order for everyone in the veterinary community to like me. As a non-DVM in this space, I figured I had to prove myself, work even harder.
I answered every Facebook post in our Veterinary Social Media group. That group has over 7k people. It didn’t end there. As my network continued to grow, I answered all the DMs, comments, and requests all over social.
I passed that “just work hard” mentality on to others. I judged people who “couldn’t keep up.” I drank the hustle Kool Aid spread by those I admire, like Gary Vaynerchuk.
I’ve maintained that pace for almost 7 years. Now I’m realizing that always working, always being available doesn’t make me happy. It drains my creativity and enthusiasm, leaving me at half capacity all the time.
I have huge dreams and goals for my future in the veterinary industry. Some unimaginable opportunities have presented themselves recently, and they’ve re-ignited my passion.
Working hard got me closer to my big vision for the future of vet med. Resting hard will ensure I’m able to hit the finish line.
I’m embracing more “lazy” time. It might upset Drake, but now I do take naps in the middle of the day during the workweek.
This is why I want to apologize. I’m sorry if I ever made you feel like you have to hustle 24/7 to win. You have to pour a lot into your dreams, but you decide what that looks like for you.
We all have different boundaries, different bandwiths, and different timelines to meet our goals.
Relaxing more doesn’t mean you’re a quitter. It means you’re it for the long haul.