How To Stay Motivated As An Entrepreneur

Business Advice, Coaching | 0 comments

Wherever you are in your business journey, being an entrepreneur can be hard and I bet there are days you don’t enjoy it and wonder what on earth made you decided to go it alone in the first place! By its very nature, being an entrepreneur means sharing your heart and soul with the online world while also putting yourself out there alongside businesses of all levels of ‘success’, audience sizes, offerings, and stages. Add to that the time spent hanging out in all the online groups where like-minded entrepreneurs share their wins, and it’s no wonder it can be easy to compare yourself to others.

As a new entrepreneur, it can be hard to stay motivated and keep going when you’re caught up in comparison-itus, looking at where everyone else is, seeing their numbers and then making comparisons. In so many online communities, I see lots of posts and conversations asking for advice on staying motivated, looking for support and a shoulder to lean on when the going gets tough. So, I have put together some suggestions and tips for when you’re feeling the urge to let your business die a slow and painful death

1. Connect with similar business owners

Don’t compare your beginnings to someone else’s middle.

This is SO important! With the female entrepreneurial community being such an active and engaging space and given the fact that many entrepreneurs actively follow others for moral support (in addition to awesome content!) it’s easy to find yourself looking at those around you and making comparisons. But, everyone started somewhere, just as you are. And, unless you’re following a business owner who very openly talks about the personal side of their business, you may not have any idea what goes on behind the scenes, how much time or work it’s taken to get them where they are right now.

Avoiding making comparisons goes for cross niche comparisons too – starting a very niche business is going to be a different experience with different numbers and stats to starting a business with a wider range of services and larger audience.

Stay Motivated By:

Finding other entrepreneurs in your niche and industry, as well as those who are at a similar stage in their journey as you, so you can bounce ideas off each other, give feedback, brainstorm, make connections and support each other in growing and developing your businesses.

2. Put a game plan in place

Yes, you can just post on social media, mix up your offerings when you like and generally wing it – that counts as being an entrepreneur and is totally fine to do! But, if you’re going into being a business owner with a bigger vision of getting your heart led business out there for the masses and/or to change the world, you need to have a Game Plan in place.

Get strategic with it but also think about what you enjoy doing, why you’re running our own business in the first place and how you want to connect with your audience. Start by determining who you’re serving and how they might find your services. Work out where your audience is hanging out and specifically target them there rather than randomly posting on every social media account you have whenever you remember.

Stay motivated by:

Putting a plan in place to keep you focused and moving forward so that even when you‘re feeling lost and unsure of what to do, you have something to fall back on

3. Choose What you want to do & do It well

There’s a lot to do when it comes to running a business: posting on social media, writing content, SEO optimisation, developing your website, networking, keeping on top of finances – the list goes on! Some of these tasks you do have to do, I mean you can’t have a business without an accounting system (apparently). But, you know what they – say it’s better to do one or two things well than to do everything half-assedly. So, choose the things you a) enjoy and that b) will be beneficial to your personal game plan.

For example, if you love being on Facebook and hate Instagram, make building a Facebook following your priority. Or if you love writing long blog posts and don’t enjoy social media, up your SEO game and make that your main source of traffic.

Stay Motivated By:

Eliminating as many tasks that you dislike or that bore the life out of you and spend your time doing the fun stuff!

Side note: Of course, there will still be things you have to do that you don’t want to, that’s life not just being an entrepreneur. So for those, use the mantra “done is better than perfect”. Get your website up there, get your content out, start selling. The more you do things, the better you will get at them

4. Be authentic

Your business is yours, it’s your ideas, your services, your experience, your passion and it was your idea to start it in the first place. Don’t let your identity get lost in your quest for money and an audience. The more you talk about the things that matter to you, experiences you want to share and topics that light you up, the more genuine and authentic your content will be and the better connections you’ll make with your audience. For many entrepreneurs, their blog is an extension of them, a personal brand that readers engage with because of the way they relate to the blogger themselves.

Stay Motivated By:

Giving yourself time to switch off. If you’re feeling overwhelmed and lost, chances are you need a break and to come back to the task(s) in hand with a fresh pair of eyes. Take a walk, go for coffee, read that novel – it is ok not to be ‘working on’ your business 24/7.

5. Have fun

Yes, running your own business is tough but that doesn’t mean it can’t, and shouldn’t be, fun! Ask any entrepreneur at any stage in their journey and they’ll say one of the reasons they do it is because ultimately they enjoy what they do – the differences they make, the time spent working with clients, the flexibility to work on their own schedule. Even though you’re running a business, it’s ok to relax and enjoy the ride remembering that it’s not all about numbers and stats!

Remember, nothing is set in stone. Yes, you have a game plan in place but I’m willing to bet it’s not written in blood and even a Google Doc can be edited easily. So if you find that focusing on Facebook and Instagram is making you lose the will to open your laptop, try something else.

Stay Motivated By:

Making time to celebrate your wins and successes without always setting yourself something new to work towards or to do as soon as a goal or to do list item is ticked off.

6. Find what works for you and your clients

Along the lines of avoiding making comparisons between the results you and others are getting, it’s equally important not to get caught up in the trap of doing what everyone else is doing. Forcing yourself to do ‘all the things’ just because everyone else seems to be doing them is soon going to be overwhelming and unproductive. Make sure you take your personality, marketing style, preferences and audience likes and dislikes into account when putting together a game plan. Promoting rebel coaching packages to heart led female entrepreneurs is going to require a very different strategy to getting people to sign up for mother and baby sign language classes.

Don’t make it about anyone else. It’s easy to look around you and see that this entrepreneur is doing A and B, that person is doing C and D and you then suddenly end up trying to do A, B, C and D under the presumption that that’s what you need to do to be successful.

Stay Motivated By:

Getting playful and adventurous; try new things, work out what you enjoy doing, see what works for you then stick to that without giving in to ‘shiny object syndrome’ of jumping into all the tactics and strategies that those around you are using just because it works for them.

7. Network online and in real life

Join Facebook groups, go to networking events, talk to other entrepreneurs, offer help, ask for advice, comment on and engage with other people’s content. The entrepreneur world is really just one big family and the more active you are within it, the more supported you will be, making the days when you want to throw your laptop out the window and immerse yourself in wine, easier to bear. Or at least there’ll be other people around you who get it!

Stay Motivated By:

Attending an event and making real-life connections – yes, virtual connections are fab but making time for in-person networking is a game changer

8. Tell people about your business

It’s important that you share and show up as you, not just as your brand – tell your friends and family what you’re doing, talk about it on your personal page. We bet they won’t 100% get the frustrations (see point 7!) but I’m also willing to bet they want to read your content and hear about your business adventures – your biggest fans might be in your personal network already.

Stay Motivated By:

Talking about your business with your friends and family rather than keeping it a secret tucked away in the realms of cyber world.

Is there anything else you do to stay motivated as an entrepreneur? I would love to hear about it!