I recently attended a wedding for my brother in Tuscany. Being removed from my day to day schedule I noticed how the business focus of the Italians I came into contact with was very different.


The articles or posts I see on Social Media or in magazines are growing in number that talk about about hustle and climbing the ladder and getting rich, all focusing on speed.  What I saw in Italy was a different type of hustle. I called it: the hustle of patience.


I know it sounds contradictory, because for many hustle is a short term burst but many times the hustle seems to happen without a long term plan. Running fast for fast sake. I wonder with all of our focus on who can hustle more are we getting caught up in the short term gains without the long term hustle of patience.


The Hustle of Patience.

I spent time in the Tuscany wine region and decided to ask some people who lived there about this difference. I discovered that their “hustle” philosophy embodied long term patience and strategy for growing and producing. Their short term hustle comes into play when they have to be flexible to change their plan based on Mother Nature.


To plan out a vineyard and plan for the grapes that will grow years down the road is a patience game. Balanced with this long term plan is the hustle to get things done step by step to insure the success is key.


Pruning, watering, watching, recognizing change, all of these have short term steps in the long term game. In my conversations with the growers they were very emphatic that you cannot become too satisfied on accomplishing one of the short term steps only to lose focus and lose the long season.


These growers plan for things years in advance because they have to build resources for success. Getting the soil right takes time, getting the right equipment takes time.


What are You Growing?


Think of your business ventures or projects you are working on. Do you have both a long term strategy as well as short term checkpoints along the way? Is your timeline years out? Where you will be 10 years from now? 5 Years? Three?


I used to say that I don’t know where I will be in 5 years so focus on the next few months. I thought that was correct because we were a new company and we needed to just get through those first few months. I realized that this thinking was wrong and I eventually refined my long term plan.


When you have the  long term plan then you can focus the short term hustle/sprints through that lens. Without that, you have individual burst of hustle without a strategy for success.


Ask yourself:


  • Why am I doing this project/business/venture?
  • What are the end goal/results I am looking to achieve?
  • If I reverse engineer these results and work backwards, what steps have to happen along the way for me to end up winning in the long term?


The hustle of patience is what all successful people have. The idea that time is precious and time is an ally not an adversary


I am trying to think more like my new friends in Italy who produce wine. You can plan and be ready to hustle but you cannot force things to grow. You have to always have your end goal in mind so you can put steps in place to move you there.


Grazie Italy for teaching me the Hustle of Patience.


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PS: this originally appeared on my Linkedin account