Life of entrepreneurs and launch of a new business are often romanticised in media. We see ready products, read stories of success and rarely discuss the struggles every founder inevitably goes through.
Anxiety, burnout and a drop in motivation are more common among entrepreneurs than one might think. Early stages of business are usually full of uncertainty and require a strong character to go through them successfully. Low points, however, are not the fanciest topics to talk about, and very few business leaders would admit them publicly. But it is exactly when entrepreneurs need support the most – when they are still at the beginning of their journey, and may be just a step away from their biggest breakthrough.
Entrepreneurial burnout can either turn into a life-long regret, or into a refreshingly new launching pad. It is not the lack of challenges but how we deal with them what makes a success story.
I asked fellow online entrepreneurs what they do when anxiety and lack of motivation take over, and here is the advice they gave me:
- Change your surroundings
Whether you work from home, in an office or in a co-working space, most likely the majority of your time is spent at one spot. Try to change your environment – go to a coffee shop, a library, a park, or if possible, even to another country. Simply a different window view can break your habitual thinking pattern and show a new perspective on current matters.
2. Remember where you’ve started and how far you’ve come
It is easy to loose motivation when you feel that there is no progress in your work and you don’t see tangible results right away. You should never forget, however, where you’d started from and how much you accomplished since. Not all accomplishments can be “calculated” – it can be simply invaluable experience and personal growth. Besides, never ignore the power of failure
3. Spend time with people who inspire you
Humans are social beings and even introverts can benefit from breaking their solitude. Try to surround yourself with people who are motivated, driven and who believe in themselves. You will notice how contagious their energy is.
4. Allow yourself a break
You can take some unplanned time off and spend it at home with the family, head into the wild or do whatever feels right. The most important part is to “switch off” – to pause your work routine for a while or to delegate it. A break will let you look at the same things with a fresh mind.
5. Write down WHY you are doing what you are doing
There is always a reason why entrepreneurs embark on their journey. It can be a desire to be your own boss, a search for flexibility, an urge to get to infinite earnings and not be capped by an average salary, or simply a desire to make this world a better place. Remembering your WHY is a very powerful motivation boost.
6. Learn meditation
Latest research shows that meditation boosts mental well-being and improves focus and self-control. Meditation is something I have personally benefited tremendously from, and it is how I start my daily morning routine. (Here I’m sharing my personal daily 10 minutes meditation)
7. Disconnect regularly
Whatever your business niche is, most likely you spend 90% of your day in front of the screens of all sizes. Being constantly online brings a lot of unnecessary clutter and noise in your head. It can demotivate, prompt to compare yourself to others and simply take you off track. Disconnecting even for one full day can become a needed productivity boost and give you the energy that you so much in need of.
8. Exercise and spend time outdoors
Exercise has the power to reduce stress and refresh your mind. Moreover, physical activities release endorphins, which create positive feeling in the body and boost self-esteem. There is a reason why highly successful people include sport activities in their daily routines.
Growing your own business is not easy, but it is the most rewarding journey. It is inevitable and totally normal to have “low points” and experience lack of motivation at times. It is the way you deal with those challenges that will determine your success. Luckily, the secret to staying motivated, focused and productive can be much simpler than you think. Make time for yourself and your personal well-being – you’ll be surprised how much your business will benefit from it.