You’re doing it. For years you’ve wanted to work from home and you are finally doing it.
You are no longer an employee who has a “J O B”; you are now a business owner, self-employed, ruler of your own destiny AND you have inherited all the responsibilities that come with owning a business:
* You are the manager and the project planner
* You are the marketer
* You are the product creator and service provider
* You are the support department
And the list goes on.
Unfortunately, as a self-employed entrepreneur, you can not only choose when to work, but when NOT to work. And this can be a real problem.
Believe me, many days when I get out of bed I decide to head to the golf course or local fishing hole instead of opening my laptop.
That’s because as an entrepreneur, there are so many things involved with running our businesses that we can easily get overwhelmed and not know what to do next.
So what does a small business owner do to stay motivated while working from home? Here are seven strategies that I use to help with my own motivation issues…
1. Remember the “why”.
Take a step back to remember the reason you went into business in the first place. What was your inspiration? It helps to focus intently on how you felt when you first realized you wanted to be successfully self-employed. For me, it was the sense of freedom and independence that I knew would come with success as an entrepreneur.
2. Give yourself a deadline.
If you’re procrastinating about a project, you may be motivated by the pressure of a deadline. Try giving yourself a deadline that you won’t want to back down on. Send an email announcing a new product launch. Setup a JV page and list your launch date at muncheye.com so you have to stick to it. Start accepting affiliate signups.
3. Maintain a support system.
One of the hardest parts of being a solopreneur can be the sense of isolation. When things go right (or wrong), we no longer have the “water cooler” to go to. Be sure there is someone who you can share with, someone who is available for a quick motivational chat when you need one. Even if it’s just a JV partner or a mentor that you can exchange emails with, even one good contact can help.
4. Keep the goal in sight.
A simple, yet effective motivational tool is to keep your goals in sight – literally. Take a picture of your dream house and make it the background wallpaper on your computer. Save an image from pixabay of your desired lifestyle, maybe a hiker in nature or a traveler. Make that your background wallpaper. One glance can be a megadose of motivation!
5. Use checklists and rewards.
When faced with a large project, unpleasant task or anything that overwhelms you, the trick is to plan a task every single day, then reward yourself.
The best way I’ve found to take daily steps toward a goal is to use checklists. For instance, if you want to grow a powerful social media traffic source, use this checklist every day for a month.
Then reward yourself as your tasks or chunks or tasks are completed. The reward can be as simple as a short day trip to a favorite destination, or as exciting as a professional sporting event. Just be sure to plan a reward that YOU want and will enjoy!
6. Use shortcuts to make big leaps forward.
Building a business online can be time consuming. After all, to really make a go of it you’ll need a website. You’ll need an autoreponder with some welcome and follow-up emails set up. You’ll need to create a product or two every year, such as a digital info-product. These things take time and effort. So make sure you take advantage of shortcuts now and then.
For example, a couple times a year I buy the rights to a great training program. I take a day, set it up on my site and use it for quick profits while helping my peeps with something I know they need help with. For example, I recently added this course on Canva to my site.
Using shortcuts like that help you make leaps forward with not only your online skills, but with your sales. Nowadays you can buy complete funnels all done for your affiliate marketing efforts. For example, here’s a great package I recommend for that purpose in the Personal Development niche. Try a solution like that from time to time and you may be surprised how it increases your results.
7. Take a break.
You’ve most likely never worked harder than when you are first starting your own business. In addition to actually “doing” all the work, you need to work on marketing, support and other “non-earning” tasks.
Don’t get caught in the trap of “all work and no play”. Be sure you take days off and breaks throughout the day to rejuvenate and gain some perspective. Whenever I’m stuck on a project, I grab the dog and go for a walk… by the time I return to my home office, things have usually sorted themselves out in my head.
It doesn’t matter how successful your home business is or how much you love to work from home; both new and established entrepreneurs face the motivational dilemma at some point.
While some of the above motivational strategies may seem conflicting on their face – giving yourself a deadline versus taking a break for example – they all have their place in the life of a successful entrepreneur.
Great article, The checklist bit is a real eye opener. Things do get reall difficult when you’re working for yourself, so much to do, so little time. This article helps to remove some of the fog surrounding all the actual stuff you need to do to make it for yourself. Thanks.
VERY timely… I woke up unmotivated today too.
Jim, this is a very good article but I have to take issue with your headline on the promotional letter for this article. “How did I get this lazy?” LAZY is the last thing that I would ever call you. 🙂 I’ve been following your site for 15 years and you’re one of the hardest working people on the Internet.
To your success!
Thanks for the kind words Tom. Although I may “look” like I’m hard working, I tend to take months where I do the minimum. Then every six month or so I get down to it and create a new project. I need to get better at that. 😉
Although I agree with all of your points I truly believe your “why” is the biggest thing that will keep you going. Of course, that may be the thing that drives you to burnout and causes family problems if we are not careful.
Did you take your wife fishing?
I think you’re absolutely right about that Clyde. And no, my wife does not enjoy fishing, though my daughter does!