5 Ways to Stay Motivated During an Entrepreneurial Venture
Have any of these thoughts crossed your mind? Did you leave your steady-but-unpleasant job to follow your dream of becoming an entrepreneur? Have you ever felt stumped and as if you’d bitten off more than you could chew along the way?
Throughout your entrepreneurial path, you will encounter several setbacks, and it is easy to sink into a pit of self-doubt in which the aforementioned questions are frequently addressed by your inner voice.
Failure is the one thing that is unavoidable on the road to achievement. It is our responsibility as independent thinkers and entrepreneurs to know how to manage our emotions when we fail. As an entrepreneur, I’ve done and continue to do various things to combat self-doubt.
1. Stop Seeking Other People’s Approval
Who can blame us? We, humans, are renowned for doing or doing things only to satisfy others. People have been hardwired to want relationships with—and praise from—other humans during millions of years of psychological evolution.
This evolutionary tendency may be traced back to prehistory when an individual’s capacity to interact was directly related to their survival. Our forefathers discovered safety in numbers and hence had to learn to collaborate. They also had to act in a socially acceptable manner to other members of their communities.
This emotional tendency has not vanished. How many times have you found yourself making a falsehood to avoid getting into trouble, or giving your closest buddy a compliment knowing well well that they don’t deserve it? Perhaps you felt compelled to pursue a career that was not your true calling because your parents insisted on it.
We seek the approval of others in many aspects of our life, and as entrepreneurs, this approach may stymie our progress toward our goals. Everything we do must be done with integrity and for the right reasons. Our good intentions will yield fruit if they are pure. Otherwise, our acts will be useless and unsustainable.
The harsh reality of seeking the favor of others is that you will almost certainly never achieve it. Even if you believe you have accomplished something that has made your parents proud, there is likely more that they want you to do.
“I want you to work hard, obtain a degree, find a job, get married, have children, and then teach your children the same thing.” Maybe you’ve spent your whole life attaining those things, but it’s just deepened your animosity against your parents since you’ve never done anything that you truly desired.
As an entrepreneur, you must give it your all—you must be completely devoted. If you’re only giving your all to impress someone else, you’re not going to stay long. And when failures strike, you’ll begin to look for anything or someone else to blame.
Stop looking for acceptance from others. Do things because you want to and for the sake of impressing yourself.
2. Concentrate on One Task at a Time.
When it comes to completing work efficiently, the capacity to focus completely is essential. When attempting to achieve a goal, it is critical to be as focused as possible. It’s difficult to write a poem while sprinting an 800-meter race. One should constantly concentrate on executing one job well.
According to a BBC story, humans can focus on one subject for roughly 90 minutes before needing a 15-minute break. It is our responsibility as job entrepreneurs to make those 90 minutes as useful as possible. This includes throwing away your phone, ignoring social media, deactivating the YouTube app, and turning off the television.
During those 90 minutes, you must have all of your troops ready to take on the duties at hand. The standard is 90 minutes, but some people can stay concentrated for much longer. Everyone would have a distinct set of criteria. As a result, anyone who wishes to concentrate on a creative task must determine how much deep attention they can sustain over time and not surpass that limit.
This is especially true for creative tasks such as writing or creating. Samuel Andreyev, a successful Canadian music composer, stated that he can only produce music for roughly three hours every day. “In addition to all of the talents required for music composition, you must also know how to work,” Andreyev explains.
When you exceed your ability to concentrate, you tend to enter the world of diminishing returns, where the more you attempt to slug it out, the lower the quality of your products. It is not just necessary to work hard; it is also necessary to work wisely.
So, how does this connect to the question of self-doubt? Modest incremental periods of intense attention result in the achievement of small incremental goals, and this is the secret to success.
As an entrepreneur, you must realize that it will take a long time to see any meaningful results, therefore to avoid being psychologically exhausted, these small “wins” are what will keep you going mentally and shut out the voice in your brain that says “you can’t do this.” Many minor victories over a long period will lead to success.
3. Quit justifying bad habits.
Don’t get too tangled up with this one. It is always beneficial to be able to reason things. But what if it isn’t always the time?
I had a buddy who was an ardent alcoholic. She found herself eating enormous amounts of alcohol daily. When I challenged her about it, she came up with a fairly plausible justification to somewhat defend her conduct.
She informed me that drinking was vital for her because she needed to improve her relationships with her friends through the act of drinking. She needed to have a nice time because she was having trouble with her partner.
The only way she could forget her troubles was to drink so she wouldn’t have to worry about them at work. Surprisingly, she was incredibly eloquent while discussing all of this. She was extremely satisfied with the manner she handled her difficulties. She failed to recognize that no matter how well she equipped herself with rationally clear arguments, they were only meaningful to her.
Anyone looking in from the outside can see that this is a toxic activity that just delays inevitable suffering with transient self-gratification. She opted to drink to disguise her pain rather than face it full-on. Why? Because confronting an issue directly—to grab the bull by the horns, as they say—can be terrifying. And why shouldn’t you be?
It’s beneficial to pinpoint certain areas of your life that need to be improved. This necessitates proper focus and acceptance of responsibility. However, the sooner you embrace that responsibility, the sooner you can deal with your problem before it snowballs into a massive problem that you believe you can’t possibly manage, leading to a major sense of self-doubt.
The goal is to solve an issue before your subconscious tells you that you can’t.
4. Attain Single Mindedness.
What does the term “single-mindedness” mean? Merriam-Webster defines it as having a single driving aim or resolve. Synonyms such as “determined” and “committed” are also included in the definition.
People that are “single-minded” may be seen as athletes whose sole aims are to be quicker, better, stronger, and to win. But, in our everyday lives, are we capable of focusing on a single goal? Determination stems from our capacity to focus on a single challenging job and then do whatever it takes to finish it.
Imagine how you’ll feel once that work is completed to fuel your determination even more. Consider the objective advantage of doing that assignment. Would accomplishing that work provide you with some kind of monetary gains, such as money? Would accomplishing the assignment drive you to take on another challenge the next day? You must chart your course and choose to face the challenges that await you.
Developing single-mindedness will assist you in eliminating distractions from your life. It is beneficial to maintain a laser-like concentration on your objectives regardless of any inner sensations that may develop, including thoughts of self-doubt.
5. Maintain a Routine
Life is full of unexpected twists and turns. We may lose our job or be promoted, fall in love or be heartbroken, lose a friend or make a new one… among the limitless combinations and permutations of life that appear to be beyond our control, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that certain things are, in fact, under our power.
That is our routine, my friends. Successful entrepreneurs always have a set of habits and rituals that they follow every day. This brings them one step closer to realizing their objectives.
This is most likely the most critical tool you will need on your entrepreneurial path. A routine can assist to reduce the arbitrary aspect of life. It assists us in gaining control of our days and focusing our efforts only on our objectives. A routine is a constant in a life full of variations; it is the one constant that does not need to alter.
Whatever happens to us during the day—whether we are inspired or depressed, joyful or sad—sticking to our daily routine is critical to ensuring that we remain productive.
We may feel happy now but sad tomorrow, yet our routine will always be there. With discipline and change, any ideas that may lead to self-doubt will be muted over time, and you will march relentlessly onward.