Having your own business is more stressful than most people realize. You work long hours, have to put up with a lot of pressure, and don’t always make the profits you hope to. Sometimes, it feels like a battle for survival – and it is! Use our tips to stay motivated and win through.
1. Have a Personal Vision
Forget about sounding impressive. This is about you. Why are YOU in business? What do you hope to achieve – not only in your business but for yourself and your family? Feel free to dream and include personal goals like overseas holidays and self-sustaining business.
Once you have a destination, it’s easier to plot a course that could lead you to it. When you’re working for something you want on a deeply personal level, it’s much easier to succeed! Use your personal vision to guide your business strategy. That way, your business contributes to the things you want most in life.
2. Set Realistic Targets and Track Progress
It’s all very well to reach for the stars, but how will you feel if you fail to make it, and can your business survive it? It’s better to set realistic targets that include a small challenge than to set yourself up for failure. While it’s great to dream, a little realism helps you through the tough early years when most young businesses fail.
Targets should be tough to reach, but not too tough. It’s a difficult balance. Work with your accountants and monitor progress constantly. Your management accounts and annual budgets are your top indicators of business health. It’s easier to get things back on track when there’s only a small variation from what you planned.
Does it feel like your business is eating you alive? Are you working long hours while failing to attend to your personal life? You are in an unsustainable situation. Remember the important things in life, and that includes you and your family! You’ll be energized to face new challenges when you know your family is there to support you. Don’t forget that you can also use your entrepreneurship wisdom and experience to better educate your child.
If the time you need for relaxation makes you feel guilty, think about it this way: you can’t give your business your best if you’re stressed out and overtired. One of the biggest problems small business owners have is the inability to switch off and just relax. The self-discipline you need to succeed will also be needed to make sure you get enough time to recharge your batteries.
4. Have Backup Plans
There’s nothing worse than feeling tied to your business. But if you don’t have a backup, you can’t take that all-important break when you need it. Recognize talent, cultivate trustworthy people, and aim for a situation in which your business continues to function whether you are there to watch over it or not!
Learning to delegate properly can be hard. You’re proud of your business and you might think you’re the “best” person to do everything, but a business that depends absolutely on one person is incredibly risky.
5. Keep Learning New Things
Small business owners need to grasp a wide range of skills. For example, you may be a top-class marketer, but now that you have your own marketing agency you must have at least a basic understanding of accounting, commercial law, and general business management.
Plus, there’s your core skill – the one that made you go into business in the first place. Upskilling, new techniques, tips, and tricks may give you the competitive edge you need to survive and thrive. Plus, learning new things is stimulating and helps to keep you motivated.
A word of warning. Don’t embark on training for the sake of training and do check what you’re getting for your money. Look out for opportunities to learn new things for less. For instance, right now, you can get discount coupons for Tony Robbins courses.
Believe it or not, you’re not alone. Other business owners are also striving for success, balance, and ultimate excellence. A network of like-minded business owners can help to keep you motivated when times are tough, give you new ideas, and keep you in touch with the trends you need to know about. You’ll feel great knowing you’re ahead of the curve.
It’s tempting to see networking as a waste of time unless it nets you a deal, but having friends in the business community means you get cross-pollination of ideas and lots of moral support. In the end, that’s far better than making a straightforward business deal.
7. Make Frugal Choices
There’s nothing more stressful than being in the red. While you may have needed a loan to get your business started, you don’t want to see mounting liabilities threatening to drag you down. Make frugal choices and encourage your staff to do the same.
Of course, you don’t mind spending money on the things your business needs to work efficiently and comfortably, but if you can cut expenses, you can grow profits, and it’s way easier to stay motivated when you’re running a profitable business.
As a business owner, your personal finances also affect the business. Keep your drawings low, budget effectively, and use money-saving opportunities like DontPayFull, a website that offers free discount coupons at a bunch of major outlets.
Getting and maintaining a healthy work-life balance is tough for small business owners, but it’s essential. Apart from overwork, financial woes will also sap your mojo and threaten your business – so combine balance with financial acumen to keep money worries at bay.
Most important of all, love what you do. If your business doesn’t make you feel happy and proud, find out what you can do to fix it, or else end it.
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