I don’t know about you, but occasionally, I need something or someone to keep me motivated after a disappointment in business or when things are not moving as fast as I hoped they would. The reality is that there are times when there are far more downs than ups on the business journey and as a small business owner, I’ve had to quickly learn to find ways to stay motivated; manage stress levels and anxiety; see the lessons in the failure and to swiftly get out of any moments of self-pity.
Self-motivation is an important quality to possess as a business leader. Probably even more important to have if you’re a start-up or a solo-preneur. The business dictionary’s definition of self-motivation is the “Ability to do what needs to be done, without influence from other people or situations. People with self-motivation can find a reason and strength to complete a task, even when challenging, without giving up or needing another to encourage them Read more. This is all well and good but sometimes you just need that extra help and not all of us can self-motivate. Some of us need to lean on someone or find strength elsewhere, to keep us going.
If you’re one of those who need additional help to stay motivated and focused, here are a few practices you can start implementing:
1. Create a support system. This could be family, friends, or a group of fellow trusted business owners. These are the people who can hold you accountable; give you that push, when you need it or just be the listening ear you may need.
2. Exercise is a great mood booster. Not only are you keeping physically healthy, but exercise is good for your mental health as well. It has been shown to lift your mood and relieve stress. So next time you feel like you need that boost in positive endorphins before tackling that next challenge, grab a pair of running shoes and go for a run or brisk walk.
3. Laughter! Google the benefits of laughter, one of the first things you’ll see is that ‘laughter decreases stress hormones’ and like exercise, it releases positive endorphins. There are many benefits to laughing and that’s why laughter coaching is an actual service. You don’t believe me? Go to LaughterCoaching for more information. But you don’t have to go to such extent, why not watch a funny video clip or your favourite comedy – anything that will get you LOL-ing and lift your mood.
4. Start meditating. There are many benefits to meditation and the following three made me think that every business owner should seriously consider incorporating this practice into their daily lives. Meditation is said to increase happiness; self-awareness and acceptance. The last two benefits can only make individuals who practice better business leaders.
5. Take regular breaks. Business owners don’t take enough breaks. There’s always an excuse to not do so: affordability; time or too much work. According to Minda Zetlin in her article inc.com Read here , research shows that we do better work when we take more breaks. These breaks don’t have to be holidays. It can start with small things like not working on weekends or taking work home.
By: Nokwazi Mzobe, June 2018