Flip the Hustle

Photo by Chlesea Gates

You can’t sit on the sidelines just because you’re working from home

“Ms. Platt, please pick up your daughter. We are closed until further notice.”

I zoomed over to the preschool to find a teacher wearing gloves, holding Lysol, with panic in her voice. Next, a text arrived from my husband: “Effective immediately: NBC employees will be working remotely.” When my parents told me that we couldn’t visit for Passover, my heart ached. Are hugs and kisses canceled too?

It all happened in a blink, right? On March 12, 2020, we were hustling, living normal lives. Twenty-four hours later, it all changed. It was very confusing. Weeks later, when broken glass, graffiti and the National Guard filled Los Angeles, I found myself wondering, “Am I alive? How was this happening?”

As an action-taker — one who loves warehouses, trade shows, the fuel of the fast-paced urban jungle — staying home was not my game plan. Nor was sharing a home office with my husband and toddlers, a sanctuary lost to co-working and a playroom.

I share this with the awareness that each person has a story, a roadmap derailed. What would come next?

What happened next was a miracle, as wondrous as Moses’ splitting of the sea! Showing up online were heart-centered entrepreneurs, sailing ships of gratitude, inviting people aboard to collectively learn to thrive in this new world. While we wait for the vaccine to be distributed, you must jump aboard. This is how we learned to flip the hustle: take different actions to get results. Here are a few simple steps you can embrace to change your business and mindset.

Practice Sales Yoga

Take a deep breath and connect with your community members. Keep their mood top of mind. Perhaps they’re numb or unsure how to plan? Keep it light.

Ask sensitive, simple questions.  A favorite question is, “How do you make a PB & J sandwich?” Although it seems silly, you’ll be amazed by the reaction. People will relax and giggle, and the answers will be insightful, opening the door to opportunities when the time is right. I share more done-for-you scripts in my recent book, “Looking Good.”

Be You

Encourage creators to stay true to their art. When it comes to fashion and lifestyle, your fans hunger for your creations. The retail mentality is “buy now, need now,” so adjust.

Be Grateful

Have gratitude. Give love — and then give more love. Send gift baskets. Create unboxing experiences. Send cards in the mail. Share your roadmaps to success, and champion others’ success.

Work on Discipline

When the hustle is your fuel, how can you maintain momentum? To flip, keep to a schedule, and stick to your plan tirelessly. You are limitless. As you flip, take risks. As they say, if you shoot for the moon, the worst that will happen is that you land among the stars.

Stop the Blur

When we look back at the coronavirus pandemic, how will we remember it? Will it be the era of stretch pants? Hoodies? Toilet-paper hoarders? Will you remember how the days blurred together or putting together themed outfits for your family? Beyond the sadness, will you remember days of sunshine? One thing that’s certain is that you will remember this time as being transformative. And hopefully, you are getting dressed and showing up for your day, whether you’re above a keyboard or hitting the streets.

You see, when you get dressed, you are energized, ready to take on the world and prepared to make decisions. Clothing is fundamental as to how we are perceived and the energy we exude. Getting dressed affects your mood and sense of self-worth. You light up the Zoom house and command attention. You smile at your reflection, and it feels good. Plus, smiling releases endorphins and other brain molecules that fight stress, relieve pain and act as an antidepressant — and we all need that.

To succeed, you can’t sit on the sidelines in your yoga pants. Now that you are getting dressed, what should you wear?

From Gym to Home Office

Consider looks that transition nicely from real life to screens. Bold and vivid colors like orange, aqua and yellow are popular. Remember: your upper body is your on-screen real estate!

Play Big

Have fun with big statement pieces, like chunky necklaces, dangling earrings or a cool hat. Beading, wooden pieces and artisanal looks are show-stoppers.

Be Versatile

Shop for pieces that are versatile and all-weather to support your year-round needs. During hard times, people crave heritage, cozy pieces, like comfy loafers, clogs, slip-on sneakers and shirts with slogans.

Embrace Nature

Boho style, which highlights pieces found in nature, uses natural dyes and has a unique, earthy color or texture.

Pay Attention to Details

Embrace craftsmanship. Without the fast hustle, you can shop from designers who share their story and take time to appreciate the little details.

For now, you might still be home. Make sure to have fun. Rock your Zoom bod with a nice walk around your neighborhood. Keep a sense of normalcy.

Daniella Platt is an author, brand strategist and sales coach. She is the author of “Looking Good: Be a Sales Rockstar & Fashion Startup Playbook” and a collaborator on the recently-released Jungle collection. Find out more about her work at daniellaplatt.com.