24 hours in a day, 168 hours in a week. Junior investment bankers regularly work 80-90 hours a week. Many other high profile professions require the same level of commitment. Often those on the outside claim that working 80-90 hours a week is bad/wrong/terrible/silly/etc but we’ve spoken with so many folks who say working that much has been the best decision of their life – it allowed them to develop a deep and strong skill set far faster than would have been possible otherwise. In other words, by working 2x the hours, they were able to generate 5x or more the rewards. And depending on where you are in your career, investing heavily in your skills and competence can pay dividends for a long time.

Nicholas Petrillo | Owner, NPM Productions

When I was younger, I used to think that work was the end-all, be-all. I was a hard worker throughout school, in studies other than music, and as I progressed through college, I began to have blinders on for my career and becoming the best musician I could be. To that end, for most of my 20s, I worked long hours, 7 days a week, without a thought for days off. As I got older, my priorities shifted, and I started to understand that work can be limited if you put the limitations on it yourself. I started leaving the emails and the projects in the studio, and pursued other interests, built and nurtured relationships, and focused on my well-being. Read more>>

Jenny Ho | Designer & Educator

I think about work life balance as sustainability. I’m discovering that an efficient way to create sustainable environments in my life is to integrate both my work self and personal self to function together. It’s efficient because it doesn’t require extra energy to keep things separate, to pretend to be something else or to pursue things not aligned with your values. Read more>>

Melanie Espinosa | I am a self taught illustrator, Latina and mom from New York City.

This is a tough question for me. As a Latina, growing up in NYC I’ve always been taught to work hard. To prioritize the grind and making money over my own well being. Since becoming a mother, I now look at time very differently. I realize that it is the most precious resource that we have and that we truly don’t have a lot of it. So I am more intentional with how I spend my time. I still value the grind and work extremely hard but my priority is my family. This doesn’t mean I don’t struggle when I feel like I’m not being productive. I constantly grapple with the fact that being an entrepreneur means my success is tied to how hard I work and how consistent I am. But being a parent means accepting that my time is sometimes better spent reading books, kissing booboos and wiping tears. Ultimately, this fuels me and has made me even more productive in the end. Read more>>

Sabrina Cohen | Copywriter, Messaging Strategist & Creative Director

There were times throughout my career (when I was in “survival mode”) where I worked 6-7 days a week. It was wildly unhealthy and wound up being counterproductive. My physical and mental health suffered. I think for many solopreneurs, and for creatives in particular, there’s often this push-pull between the hustle and self-care. Interestingly enough, I attracted more work — and more of the high-level clients and partnerships I really wanted — when I let go a little, set healthy boundaries with clients, and prioritized myself. Read more>>