What To Do When You Need Motivation or Feel “Off”

It’s been a weird week…

I don’t know if it’s because the weather is changing, it’s tax season or I’m just going through a classic solopreneur grind period where nothing too “exciting” is happening…

But every once in a while, for as long as I’ve been working on my solopreneur business, I will go through a phase like this every once in a while.

Do you know what i’m talking about?

Hard to describe in words, but it’s kind of a combination of boredom, lack of excitement and doubt in what’s going on.

I thought that once I became a “successful solopreneur” (however you want to define that…), this would stop. I would reach a point where I “made it” (not that I’m rich by any stretch of the imagination) and always be happy and satisfied.

It seems that this doesn’t really exist in entrepreneurship… and especially solopreneurship.

Anyway, it got me thinking of what helps me the most to get out of these phases. Here’s my top 3:

  1. Realize it’s just a phase. The world is not ending, the business is still moving forward and you have your health, family, friends, etc. Don’t let a few weird days make you jump ship and move to Australia (or out of Australia… if you already live in Australia).

  2. Journal. I don’t journal everyday, but when I’m going through these phases, I make sure to at least once a day (I describe why in more detail in my vlog below).

  3. Listen/read/watch something that re-focuses and grounds you. For me, it was episode #321 of the Tim Ferriss Show interviewing Brandon Stanton – founder of Humans of New York.

No that’s not an affiliate link of any sort (but Tim if you’re reading… hey!), it’s just an episode I’ll never forget because Brandon breaks down (emotionally) at one point reflecting on the first year or two of starting his company, talking about how lonely he was and how continuing to work and stick to his plan was the only way to get through it.

I am an avid podcast listener, and I truly think it’s one of the most heart-felt, genuine and emotional moments in podcast history (for an entrepreneur). It happens about 2/3 through the episode as an FYI.

Anyway, wanted to get this out of my brain and on paper (e-journal?) – and hopefully if anyone has or is going through a similar time, they can put some use to it.

Another thing to focus on when going through tough times is monitoring your motivation levels. Especially if you’re working by yourself a lot, maintaining a high enough level of motivation seems to be consistent among all of the successful solopreneurs I’ve interviewed on the Solopreneur Grind Podcast.

And if you need even more content to help you out of a rut and/or get you motivated, I’m linking to episode 26 of the podcast below where I spoke with Jeff Tippett, who tells an incredible story about how he landed political clients for his 1st business to get it off the ground (he also landed Airbnb as a client down the road as well…).

What stuck out to me about Jeff was his attitude toward getting started.

This guy was ruthless – in the most positive way possible.

What I mean by that is he:

  • focused on providing value first

  • didn’t worry about giving away his time/info for free (to a certain extent)

  • knew that if he created enough value, the customers would come

  • took any call or opportunity that presented itself

  • genuinely cared about other people and businesses

That sounds like a recipe for success, especially if you’re as hard working as Jeff is (hint: he’s a hard worker).

If you’re struggling in some way with your business, or if you want to get started, take a hard look at those 5 bullet points above.

Do you follow those principles? Could you start today?

Keep in mind, you don’t even need a business to start implementing them. In fact, implementing them would be a great way to help you find a new business idea.

Challenge: listen to episode 26 below and apply the 5 bullet points listed above, either to your current business, a business idea you have, or to life in general if you don’t have one yet. Then after a week (or shorter if you see quick results), let me know about your progress. I read every email personally.

P.S. if you want even more insight or motivation, I expanded on this line of thought in my daily vlog below (it’s less than 7min if you need a quick vid to get you through lunch):

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