To estimate the success of someone trying to start a new project, reinvent an existing one or to produce growth is understanding I would look at their ability to hustle. To work hard, to go the extra mile, to wake up before everyone else and go to bed after everyone else, hustle. To plan your week, organize your life; leverage your gifts and the opportunities that come your way for growth. I recently read 7 habits of highly effective people and it has helped me to refocus and reprioritize life. Want to be better at the hustle? Here a few tips to pick up:

You need to be an effective self-manager

Look at your schedule, get a planner, and stay motivated. Be proactive about your workload. Take an hour before your week starts to organize the most important tasks that need to get done and plan ahead. Manage your time and your productivity. For a week, keep track of all the time you have. How much time did you waste? How can you redirect that time to be more productive, to help you grow personally or recommit that time back to the relationships that are important to you.

Crush the Day

This is an easy one to say, but may be the hardest one to do. Just get things done. For me, I like to make a list of weekly and daily “to-dos.” When I start checking things off I feel more productive and accomplished. I also know when I have done enough to enjoy the rest of my day. Limit the distractions and have a high work ethic. This looks different for everyone but the principal is the safe. Create an environment that maximizes your ability to work.

Know when to say ‘No’

If your anything like me there is a lot of tasks coming your way. You need to know when to say no to what is coming towards you. If it doesn’t help your mission, values of yourself and your organization, the people around you or helps you grow, you need to evaluate why you are doing something. Cut away the fluff. Understanding your personal mission, values and the goals of your ministry help to prioritize the workload. Saying ‘no’ to smaller things in order to say ‘yes’ to things that are more important help make the hustle easier. Be strategic about the things you take on.

More Together

Surround yourself with people that are like minded and share the same passions and interests. If you are passionate about student ministry, get as many people around you who share that same drive. Who understand the same philosophies and strategies behind your the mission of your ministry. You’ll find meetings more creative, disagreements less frequent and see growth in your ability to accomplish more. People will step up in help ease your burden and their will be more joy and excitement.


You need to create margin in your life. Time to enjoy things in life and time to help manage any crisis that come up. Block off time every day for margin. Spend time with your family, friends, or doing something solely for you. This margin is key to preventing burn out. This margin is what balances out the work coming in. If there is no margin, relationships will suffer, work will become the priority of your life, and you won’t find as much joy in what you do. Fight for this margin, for this time for you and those things that are most important to you. Fight for it just as hard as you hustle.

I found myself wasting so much time, procrastinating on work. Then I began to follow some of these things. Saying no, surrounding myself with the right people and creating an environment to maximize my work. Success in your ministry isn’t only about your ability to hustle, but it helps to maximize your work output when you can in order to build the relationships that matter most.

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