Motivation is a limited resource, and you’ve probably figured that out by now. As an aspiring entrepreneur, you’re responsible for more than your motivation. Like it or not, you’re responsible for everything that’s happening around you and your business—your customers, your employees, your costs, your competition. It can get tough, I know.
Nevertheless, your motivation is one of the primary aspects that allows you to keep moving forward with your goals and dreams. It is the resource that all entrepreneurs crave during dark times, yet only a few know how to effectively trigger it when they need it the most.
In today’s post, I’m sharing 8 ways to stay motivated while running a business. Nobody said it’s going to be easy, so don’t expect it to be. You’re here, reading these words, so I guess you’re already trying your best to find motivation and inspiration to keep your dreams alive.
Follow a Bigger Purpose
Let’s start with the first things. The most successful entrepreneurs are looking to achieve greatness. Generally, a bigger purpose is involved.
Elon Musk wants to make humans an interplanetary species by developing spaceships that bring people to Mars.
Google, Amazon, and Facebook are looking to universalize the world. They’re aiming to allow everyone to experience what during the past only a few could experience.
You see, these brands and the entrepreneurs who are running them are not hustling for “the cash”. They have a huge purpose that inspires them every day. Try to find your bigger purpose and hold on to it whenever business gets rough!
Running a business is a stressful practice. It requires many resources such as knowledge, skills, motivation, passion, self-discipline, human resources, and so on. You must quickly realize that you are the one who needs to possess these resources because you’re the only one who has full control.
Without knowing yourself, you’ll never be able to stay consistent. Problems will keep coming and you’ll have very few tools to fight them.
However, if you start questioning your personality, your motives, your talents, and your flaws, you’ll be discovering what very few discover, and that is your true self.
When you identify what “moves you”, what makes you “tick”, you’ll be in a much better position to get back on your feet whenever your motivation is low.
Remind Yourself Why You’re Doing It
If you have a strong “why” behind your business, you can always use it to strengthen up and overcome your challenges. Every day is different, and so are your motivation, energy, and focus.
Take a moment to reflect on the reason why you chose to pursue this path. There could be multiple reasons, or it could be a single big one. Either way, note it down and put it on your wall, on your phone’s background, or in any other place that you frequently visit.
Perceive Failures as Valuable Feedback
A failure is a result. Business success, on the other hand, is a journey that’s comprised of unlimited results. As they say, you’ve lost one battle, but you haven’t lost the war.
When you’re failing, instead of worrying, stressing, and agonizing over your mistakes (huge motivation drainers), jump straight to the teachings of your failures. Every cause has an effect. The effect is the failure, so if you want to change it, you’ll need to change the cause, which is the action.
Use every failure to identify what you could have done better and leverage the knowledge you gather to improve your future actions. Remember: every failure is a valuable feedback!
Exceed Your Expectations
A great way to motivate yourself is to do things that you never thought you’re capable of. For example, if you’re used to working 6 focused hours every day, you can challenge yourself to work 10 hours for a limited time, like a week or a month.
Look around yourself and see what other entrepreneurs are doing. Take what you see and do it two times better. When you’re able to control your performance while your motivation levels are low, you’ll realize that you can achieve everything you set your mind to. More often than not, excelling at something makes us more confident, and the more confident we are the more motivation we’ll get.
Become a Sovereign Individual
We often become overwhelmed and demotivated because we allow chaos to rule our minds. Becoming sovereign means to become your own master. Whether you realize it or not, your subconscious mind is constantly active. This means that your thoughts, emotions, and actions are often triggered by subconscious beliefs and reactions.
Having a wavering mind will greatly disadvantage you in business, mostly because you’ll never be able to control your actions and future.
Here’s an easy way to become a sovereign entrepreneur: carefully assess your thoughts and try to figure out what emotions they lead to. Once you’re able to consciously perceive your emotions, figure out the action that is generally resulted from them.
It’s a simple loop: thoughts-emotions-actions. If you’re able to become fully conscious of your loops, you’ll be able to manage and change them according to your own wishes.
This way, even if your motivation is down every now and then, you’ll be able to rely on your mental management system that can’t fail unless you allow it to.
Develop Empowering Habits
Your habits are influencing your performance more than you probably realize. A habit is a controlled action that does not require your motivation to be performed. When you wash your face and teeth in the morning, you’re doing it automatically without giving it too much thought. This is a habit, and it was built through practice and repetition.
Therefore, building healthy habits is one of the ways to improve yourself and your business without depending on this fragile mental resource.
Here are some empowering habits that’ll lift you up as an entrepreneur:
- Have a healthy diet – avoid GMOs, junk food, sugar, and all the substances that hurt your physical and mental performance.
- Exercise regularly – so many entrepreneurs are exercising early in the morning, right before they tackle their most important tasks.
- Kill procrastination – the moment you realize that you’re procrastinating, use your whole power to overcome this state, as it can become habitual.
- Meditate – allow your mind to rest every now and then. You’re not only going to improve your motivation but also your energy, focus, and work.
I’m not a religious person, and I’m not here to tell you to have faith in God. What I’m asking you is to have faith that you will make it, no matter what. Having faith is easier than you may have thought. Here’s how I do it:
I believe from the bottom of my heart that I’ve chosen to work on a business due to a hidden yet important reason. It might not be revealed to me, but something is guiding me. I believe in faith, and if you do too, this practice will help you maintain a constant motivation in your pursuit.
If you don’t believe in faith, you can still have faith in your business. It’s all about making a decision to believe that you’re on the right path, that the challenges you’re facing are necessary and important, and that your role in this world is not limited to what you’re consciously perceiving right now.
Give Up and Start Something New
Here’s advice that nobody gives you. When you were a kid, you probably wanted a bike, a toy, or a trip to Disneyland. As you grew up, your perspective has changed, as your horizon has become wider.
We desire things that we are consciously aware of, but we rarely count the fact that our desires and dreams are often temporary.
What does this have to do with your motivation as an entrepreneur? It’s simple. Even if you may not realize it right now, you might need additional passion, additional hope, or an additional desire to achieve new things.
Maybe your business plan bores you and you’re not aware of it. Maybe, but just maybe, you are following a path that was established by a “different you” a long time ago.
Lots of motivation advice start with an abstract advice, which is to “Never give up”. Well, giving up on a business that doesn’t resonate with you anymore could be the most relieving action you’ve taken in a long time. Ending something before it drags you down completely is not a sign of weakness. It tells that you’re self-aware, conscious, and confident that you’re making the right decision!
I’ll remind you once again that running a successful business isn’t for everybody. However, I’m pretty sure that you truly have what it takes, especially if you can learn how to manage both your life and your business.
Developing high levels of motivation is not an act, but rather a skill. If you keep working on it, you’ll never run into motivational troubles again. Keep your head up now, pick a few motivation strategies, and follow them rigorously and consistently!