Ways to keep motivated when you’re self-employed or run your own business

Running your own business, especially if you work alone, can be really hard and lonely.  I personally find my motivation is like a rollercoaster – one week I’m really determined and getting all my business admin and marketing done alongside my daily work and the next week I’m just getting my client work done and that’s it.  However, when I can feel myself feeling demotivated I have a number of things I do to try and get my mojo back.  Below are some items from my motivation boosting toolkit: 

Find a sounding board/buddie

I have some friends who also work for themselves and we find it really useful chatting every now and then, sharing our wins and our struggles and boosting each other up.  I also pride myself on giving my clients extra support by being their sounding board for their ideas, a person then can off load about their work stresses and they also find it useful having someone “out of the mix” to chat to about things going on in their lives who can give impartial advice from an outsiders view point.

Review each month 

Sometimes, when we are in the midst of working and dealing with all life throws at us we can forget how far we have come.  It’s a really good idea to set some time aside to review the past month (or months) focusing on what you enjoyed and what went well but also any errors you made or any work you did that you didn’t enjoy.  By focusing on what we enjoy and putting right any mistakes we’ve made it’s easier to keep focused and keep pushing forward.

Setting goals
January is traditionally the month where people set goals, but I am a big believer in setting 3, 6 and 9 month goals as well as the big 12 month goals.  This again, helps to stay focussed and keeps you pushing forward to hit those goals.  I will admit, I had huge goals for 2021 to bring more clients on board and grow my fabulous EA team, but with another lockdown on our hands and home schooling I have definitely put the brakes on this for the first few months of 2021 and I am focusing on ensuring I give my current clients the time and dedication they need and deserve as well as spending time with my family and helping the kids with their school work (the struggle and pressure is real!).

Practicing Gratitude 

Being grateful for everything I already have is such a great motivator for me because it’s what I’ve done in the past that has got me to where I am now.  I believe we can get so caught up in what we want and what we don’t yet have, that we forget to be grateful for what we do have. Especially during the past year of this pandemic I have always done my best to stay focused on the good – our home, our garden, our health, our work etc. That doesn’t mean not feeling sad or down about the situation at times, we all need to have those days, but I always try to focus on the positives.  Focusing on the good your business is giving, and has given, will help you push through the dark days when things aren’t going as you’d hoped. 

Exercise

I say this ALL THE TIME but getting out of the house for some form of exercise, even just a 10 minute walk around the block, gives you a fresh head and fresh motivation.  I love the feeling I get after I have been for a run or done a workout.  I like to challenge myself physically and mentally when I work out, to run faster or further, cycle further on the spin bike, or up my weights in my pump class.  Knowing I can push myself in this way means I know I can do the same in my business life too. 

Take time off

Being a business owner means you don’t often switch off or take time off.  I generally have 2 weeks off in the summer and 2 weeks off at Christmas when I totally switch off from work and my emails and that’s about it.  But if I have a quiet afternoon I try and switch off from work and read or watch some trash TV (I have recently discovered Bling Empire!).  

I do hope those ideas have resonated with you and given you some food for thought to keeping yourselves motivated.  If you have any tips to share I would love to hear from you. 

Photo by Prateek Katyal on Unsplash

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