By: Stephanie Jade Wong
Brooklyn-based storyteller and gender equality advocate, Adele Jackson-Gibson (also known as A.J.) says that to the average person, it probably looks like all she does is side hustle. Adele is a writer, podcast producer, BMG model, and CrossFit coach with a background in journalism and French literature.
By definition, a hustle is an energetic activity or means to move quickly. But what if we changed our mindset and thought about it as a flow? Hustle Flow.
We partnered with Adele to create this Hustle Flow tee.
The Hustle Flow top is screen printed by hand at a print shop in Brooklyn, NY, and 5% of the sales will be donated to Equality League. This organization is a global alliance of people who use their power to influence change in sports and society.
AJG: It means releasing the old story of the NYC hustle.
The heavy, sometimes crippling promise of The American Dream, where we think that if we double-down and work hard enough, we'll be deserving of wealth, a green lawn, and a dog.
"What if you've been worthy of everything you've ever wanted?"
What if the Universe has been trying to give you your purpose, your dreams, the love you've been seeking your whole life, but you've been stuck in the trenches for so long, you haven't been open to receive it?
AM: Why did you select Equality League for your charity?
AJG: Equality League is doing amazing things in the human rights/sports sector. Their goal is to promote gender equality and child safety in sports worldwide.
They most recently helped pass the Safe Sport Act which protects young athletes from sexual abuse. They’re now fighting for Iranian women and their right to enter stadiums for sports events. Currently, they are banned to attend, even though many women in Iran are sports fans.
It's incredible how much awareness the Equality League is bringing to these issues. They’re addressing the movers and shakers of the world to induce change. #WeAreEQL
AJG: Gender equality to me means that in every area of society, every gender and every gender expression is respected equally and provided the same opportunities and resources to pursue whatever they'd like to be, do or have.
Being a former DI athlete in soccer and track has taught me a lot about my power and strength as a woman. It's earned me support and respect among men throughout my life, and so I've never really questioned my worthiness as a woman and my right to access whatever the guys have. However, being in sports has also taught me that the world of sports still has a long way to go on a global scale in terms of respecting female athletes as much as society heralds male athletes.
We are still working towards equal pay and gender discrimination. This obstacle, of course, is not just in sports but in many different industries. However —and maybe I'm just biased — I believe that ever since Title IX, women's sports has been at the center of this social conversation and I'm so grateful to be a part of a community of female athletes that have been advocating for gender equality before I was even born.
AM: What motivates you?
AJG: The fact that I came to this earth to play and create.
AM: What inspires you in work and in life?
AJG: Connections. I love deep and enlightening conversations, and getting to the root of who people are. I feel like my purpose in life is to connect people not only to other people, but to the truth of themselves. Love is the biggest inspiration. Love is connection. ❤️
AM: What are a few uplifting phrases you use often?
AJG: "Align, allow, then flow."
"The net is always there."
"I am loved. I am loved."
"I can't get this life wrong."
"I am here to play."
AM: What's something you’re proud to have accomplished recently?
AJG: I'm proud to have performed for the Story Collider, which is a live storytelling podcast. I love storytelling in many forms, but speaking this way has a special place in my heart. It's very raw and open, and I'm the type of person that can listen to stories for hours. So I was honored that I was selected to be on a stage.
AM: How do you usually celebrate your wins?
AJG: I usually eat something tasty. 😋
AM: What's something about you that we wouldn't know by looking at your social media profiles?
AJG: I’ve loved doodling since I was a kid. Growing up, I developed this story around me not being any good. I'm reopening that part of myself now and allowing myself to see where my pencil takes me.
You might find me at a random NYC diner, eating fries 🍟and coloring. Don't be afraid to say hi!
Adele’s inspirational and motivational words remind us that you don’t have to hustle through your side hustle. Whether you have zero, one, or a handful of side hustles, it’s important to flow through your hard work.
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