Hustle & Heart Column How to Motivate the Heck Out of Yourself

Let’s get real – motivation comes in waves. There are days where you are fueled by the mere thought of success and reaching your goals, and somehow the next 24 hours can have you feeling like curling up in a ball doing nothing, with motivation nowhere in sight.

When you’re running a business, you often have to wear a lot of different hats, and “cheerleader” is definitely one of them! Of course you want to do your best and push yourself forward in your business but honestly, it’s not always that easy. Life happens, and even entrepreneurship, with its ups and downs can get a little monotonous at times, making it difficult to keep that motivation and momentum going strong.

Over the last five years of running my business, I’ve found that in those hot and cold moments, there are steps I can take that help me rise up in my business and put the pedal to the metal – metaphorically speaking of course (I’m a creative business coach, not a NASCAR driver!).

If you ride the struggle bus to motivation sometimes, here are a few things you can do to help pick up your pom-poms and cheer yourself on to meet those incredible goals you have for your business.

Create a Routine and Embrace It

The term “creature of habit” is actually one we should all aspire to be. The days where you don’t feel like getting things done, or you can identify procrastination taking over, how you set your day up may be one of the factors. When we don’t have a routine in place for how we tackle our work, there is too much room for interpretation on when and how we will actually get things accomplished. Once you decide to set up a routine, think back to the days or weeks where you felt like you were unstoppable! What do you think made the difference?

Did you wake up early and get right to work in your office or did you do a yoga class first and work from a coffee shop all day? Are you someone who needs to have time to work without interruption and then have meetings stacked together? Think about what type of flow helps you be your most productive and try to create a routine around that. Try it out and see how your motivation to tackle the day changes!

Shift Gears and Redirect Your Energy

Do you ever sit at your computer with the cursor blinking back at you and the clock moving forward faster than you thought possible? When we force ourselves to work on something past the initial moment of feeling lost or uninspired, we definitely don’t create our best work. In fact, the most helpful thing to do in that moment is to shift gears entirely. Close out what you are working on and go to the next task on your list or move away from what you’re doing entirely. Compare yourself to a young child sitting all day in a classroom without ever going to recess or gym class. Your energy and focus would start to diminish without that break in between. It allows students to come back refreshed and ready to get back to work. As adults, we need that same redirection sometimes!

Keep a Rainy Day File Nearby

One of the best pieces of advice I received from a friend was to create a “rainy day” folder in my email inbox. If you’re unfamiliar, this folder is meant to be a place where you can store those emails and sweet messages of encouragement, praise, and rockstar moments in your inbox. It could be a review from a client, a thank you from a friend, or anything that makes you smile and reminds you that you’re doing amazing things!

Life can get a little hectic to say the least, especially when you’re juggling all the normal aspects of adult life and running a business. Sometimes the motivation we need is hidden in those sweet reminders. I’ve kept my own folder and have had plenty of days where what I needed to feel my most motivated was to read just a few of those emails. Challenge yourself to create one of your own today!

Remind Yourself Why You Started

When you first create a brand, one of the factors that people concentrate on first is typically curating their brand’s mission or vision, and they have to really think about the “Why” behind their business. Long after they launch and the reality of working in their business takes over, that “Why” can be something that just gets left typed up on a page somewhere. One of my biggest weapons against feeling unmotivated is remembering my “Why.” Write your “Why” down somewhere you can see every day: inside your planner, a post-it at your desk, or on your bathroom mirror. When all else fails to motivate you, pause, and remember why you started in the first place!



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