In today’s fast-paced and increasingly connected society, running a business can be downright exhausting. When business is booming, or even when business is slow, it can be difficult to maintain the motivation to continue working. Here are our suggestions for how to keep motivated to run your business:
Revisit Your Work-Life Balance
At times it can seem like your business is your life, but this is not the case. Just like a person working for an employer can suffer from “burnout” after too many hours or too long a stretch without a break, it is important to take time away from your business for yourself. Read, write, teach, or take up a new hobby. Stress will always be present in some form for the avid entrepreneur, but by dedicating a point of each day strictly for yourself, you can help reduce this stress and conserve that energy for more important, useful endeavors the following day.
Think About Why You Started Your Business
Sometimes, your business might diverge from its original intended path. If this happens, it might be difficult to stay motivated. If you open a restaurant because you love cooking, it can sometimes be hard to reconcile with the fact that you are now spending more time completing paperwork than creating lavish, award-winning dishes. If you are able, consider designating some of these tasks to other individuals to allow you to reconnect with your passion and regain your enthusiasm. You may even be able to automate tasks–such as your social media management through applications like Hootsuite.
Set Realistic Goals
Ensuring your goals are realistic is paramount to how you will perceive success and keep yourself motivated. If you set goals that are too difficult or even impossible to reach, you are pre-programming yourself to consider every bit of work you do as a failure. If you find yourself already in this situation and needing to find a way out of it, take a day to think about simple goals you can set that you can reach quickly and easily. Things as seemingly insignificant as just sweeping the storefront or cleaning the windows to make the store look more presentable can make a big difference in your overall opinion of your own successfulness. Some individuals might even need to go so far as writing down what they accomplish each day. Do whatever works best for you.
Reward Yourself for What You Have Already Accomplished
Feeling low, miserable, and unmotivated? Consider this: only 14% of Americans are operating as an entrepreneur. You, and your business, are a rarity. This is because it is a LOT of work to start a business, let alone maintain one, and even more so to ensure that business is successful! If you’re reading this, you’re probably an entrepreneur, and you’ve already accomplished a great deal. Pride yourself on this fact, and for all the other achievements you have reached.
Consider a “Freshening Up”
If your business’ website, branding, or storefront outdated or lacking character? Perhaps it no longer matches the culture of the business, or maybe the color of that ugly old countertop is just driving you crazy. If that’s the case, you can always consider a redesign or remodel to freshen things up and re-energize both yourself and your employees.
Find New Inspiration
Although I hate to throw Pinterest in here yet AGAIN, the fact remains that this is by far the best online inspiration source out there. You can type in almost anything and be overwhelmed with various ways to recreate your identity, your storefront, your office, or even your company vehicles. Furthermore, connecting with fellow business owners or even your customers can reignite the spark or even generate a new one to help re-motivate you to keep running your business.
Consider a Different Approach to Certain Tasks
If you are stuck in a routine that isn’t working, developing a new approach to break free of that routine can be…well…liberating. Talk to a marketing person about a new ad campaign. Talk to your fellow business owners about how they handle day-to-day clerical tasks. Research more efficient software for managing your time or accounting. No matter what your routine may be, breaking that routine can be a breath of fresh air when your motivation has weakened.
How do you stay motivated? Tell us in the comments!