We’re not going to sugarcoat it – being an entrepreneur can be tough.
You work day and night for what is often very little reward or recognition, especially in the early days. Your social life becomes a distant memory and you start to forget what hobbies you used to have. Meanwhile, weekdays and weekends blend into just one long, neverending work week, and you can’t remember your last vacation. (“Hmm…does that time when my phone died count as a vacation?”)
We all have our days when the challenges of owning a business feel overwhelming. So, how can you stay positive and keep up the momentum as an entrepreneur, without completely burning out?
For starters, don’t beat yourself up for feeling overwhelmed. It’s just a sign that you need to take a step back and make some changes in a more positive direction. Below, we’ve got five simple tips to help you improve your mindset and stay positive whenever things get tough.
5 Ways to Stay Positive as an Entrepreneur:
1. Take a break
When you’re an entrepreneur, it’s easy to let your business take over your entire life.
Hey, we get it. You’ve put your blood, sweat, and tears into building a business that you want to make into a long-term success. And your workload might be so huge that hitting the pause button might seem downright laughable. But the reality is if you don’t take care of yourself – physically, emotionally, mentally – then you aren’t doing yourself or your business any favors.
Ultimately, taking care of yourself on a personal level will help you to be a better entrepreneur. It may seem counter-intuitive, but shifting your focus toward yourself and allowing yourself some downtime is sometimes the best thing you can do for your business.
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2. Have clear goals
Flying by the seat of your pants as an entrepreneur might be exciting for a while, but it’s also exhausting (not to mention a really bad idea).
Stay focused on where your business is going and outline some goals for both the short and long-term to help you measure your progress. This will help to keep you motivated and from getting overwhelmed by the day-to-day challenges that
might will arise.
3. Get your rest
No, really. Get some damn sleep.
Being an entrepreneur doesn’t have to mean working non-stop and staying up all night. When you’re overworked and burned out your productivity sucks anyway, so it’s really not even worth it.
In fact, a 2011 survey that focused on workplace productivity revealed that “performance and productivity…was significantly lower among workers with insomnia and other sleep trouble than they were among those who usually slept well.”
So, make a personal commitment to not work at least an hour before bedtime and get serious about getting some good old-fashioned sleep. Your productivity and personal well-being depend on it.
4. Don’t compare yourself to others
Your business and your journey as an entrepreneur is yours, and yours alone.
Sure, there’s always a lot to be learned from others who have walked a similar path. But the comparison game can quickly become your downfall if you start to feel like you aren’t measuring up to your peers.
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If your business isn’t accelerating as quickly as your neighbor’s, it doesn’t mean it’s a failure. Keep focused on your own goals and your own path, not somebody else’s.
5. Get out of the house
When you work for yourself, you can easily end up working in a vacuum where the extent to which you interact with other human beings is through virtual meetings, and showering is therefore entirely optional.
It’s important, however, for the sake of maintaining a positive outlook and a successful business that you get away from the computer and out into the world.
Walk the dog and chat with your local business owners. Rather than having just another conference call, suggest meeting your clients for lunch now and then for some friendly facetime. Join a networking group or attend an industry conference to connect with others who can help to motivate and inspire you.
How do you stay positive?
Are you a business owner? How do you keep your chin up when things get tough? Share your thoughts in the comments below!