Is Working Nonstop a Badge of Honour?

Tommy and I stayed up until 1:30 am playing Golden Tee on the day of the biggest deal of his life.

With zero guilt.

Even though we “should be” busy working every minute of every day. Tommy took the time to have a long steak dinner with me, horse around at a friend’s house (see the silly video below), and spend quality time with his girlfriend.

Stop this limiting belief of working 24-7

I used to think working nonstop was a badge of honour— I was getting ahead or justified to be “catching up” on projects that were behind.

But here’s what I didn’t realise. Maintaining work-life balance.

I was alienating friends and family, who believed I was “too busy” for them. And my productivity wasn’t that high, if I was honest with myself— since we are not robots that can be at 100% 24-7.

I ran D1 track and cross country in college.

I was doing poorly in my first season— getting crushed by Africans who beat me by minutes in the 10K.

Humiliating.

So I told the Coach I needed to quit the team since I needed to focus on academics. I was on a full scholarship and needed to maintain a 3.7 GPA to keep it.

He told me that my issue was a lack of focus. Nobody can work 24/7. We play video games, daydream, watch porn, or whatever “wastes” our time.

I agreed not to quit but do it his way.

Work

My energy level and output increased by being around the team and friends, even in lightweight moments, instead of toiling in silence.

I ran the best times of my life and also had straight As.

Some will say that I manifested it with a positive attitude. Those light moments of play put me in peak performance mode.

If you make money with your brain, you need only make a few key daily decisions— that’s it.

And if you run a company (with a team of people instead of you working solo), then you set the tone and environment for them.

Who would have thought that being a good friend and goofing off with teammates was a smart business strategy?

I’ve been around many high performers and NEVER see them hurry or tell me how busy they are.

I know Tommy has 600 employees and operations in 24 states and hasn’t checked his email in 3 days.

But whenever I’m around folks like him, he makes me feel like he has all the time in the world for me— making me feel special.

Same for Darryl Isaacs, who could act like a big-time lawyer who has earned billions and flies private.

He’s in London right now with his family watching Kentucky play.

And it’s not because he has a big company with a big team, allowing him to play. He didn’t wait until that vague time when everything was perfect.

Justin Breen has been doing this for 24 years, way before he “made it”.

I’m resisting the urge to respond to every email ASAP— and instead, take the moments to show that I genuinely care for people.

I work hard but have made the mistake of alienating others by making them feel like I need to leave immediately for the next thing.

Have you been making this same mistake, too?

Dennis Yu

About the Author

Dennis Yu
Dennis Yu is co-author of the #1 best-selling book on Amazon in social media, The Definitive Guide to TikTok Ads.  He has spent a billion dollars on Facebook ads across his agencies and agencies he advises. Mr. Yu is the "million jobs" guy-- on a mission to create one million jobs via hands-on social media training, partnering with universities and professional organizations.

You can find him quoted in major publications and on television such as CNN, the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, NPR, and LA Times. Clients have included Nike, Red Bull, the Golden State Warriors, Ashley Furniture, Quiznos-- down to local service businesses like real estate agents and dentists. He's spoken at over 750 conferences in 20 countries, having flown over 6 million miles in the last 30 years to train up young adults and business owners. He speaks for free as long as the organization believes in the job-creation mission and covers business class travel.

You can find him hiking tall mountains, eating chicken wings, and taking Kaqun oxygen baths-- likely in a city near you.