Need Motivation? This Advice Actually Works!
I don’t care how much you love your business.
Or how long you’ve been doing it.
Or how excited you are about what you do.
...If you’re running your own business, at some point, you WILL become unmotivated.
It happens to us all.
And when it does?
You won’t be as productive as you need to be. You won’t work the way you need to. Fear and doubt will creep in and affect the way you work. And you won’t represent your brand with the same quality as you normally would.
Which means you’ll lose money.
Hell, you could even lose your whole damn business if you remain unmotivated for too long.
That means losing everything you’ve worked so hard to build.
All gone. Just like that. All because you weren’t motivated and didn’t know what to do or how to fix it.
Now, let me share some truth with you about motivation:
As a freelance business owner, motivation has absolutely NOTHING to do with a structured morning routine that starts at the ass crack of dawn, a whole list of helpful “hacks” you found from a Google search, or even attending some ridiculously expensive seminar where finding your motivation will put you $10k in the hole.
Sure, that probably seems like common sense.
But, it’s a HUGE deal.
Because it’s SERIOUSLY easy to fall into a vicious cycle of trying hack after hack and trick after trick to get motivated again, only to find they don’t work . . . leading to you becoming discouraged and even more unmotivated.
And when THAT happens?
Nothing else does.
Your business can’t grow. You start to neglect your brand entirely.
Okay, so what in the hell DOES work? How can you ACTUALLY motivate yourself?
How do you stay motivated when you’ve got this whole business to build and grow, customers to make happy, and mental / physical health issues to deal with?
How do you stay motivated when it all just seems like too much, and you want to just throw in the towel?
The REAL Way to Stay Motivated
as a Freelance Business Owner
The REAL Way to Stay Motivated
as a Freelance Business Owner
A year ago, I was smoking a pack of cigarettes a day.
And I had a massive problem with how I felt.
How it exacerbate chronic illnesses I already had.
How I felt sick all the damn time. How I couldn’t stop coughing.
How I couldn’t even walk up short flights of stairs without getting winded.
I hated smoking. I hated everything about it, and I missed how I felt before I started.
So, I made a decision:
“I want to stop smoking.”
And, let me tell you:
---> Fighting nicotine addiction is tough as hell.
---> Settling for cannabis instead of cigarettes when you have I-will-do-anything-omg-I-am-going-to-lose-my-shit nicotine cravings is tough as hell.
But, you know what got me through it?
What made me choose self-discipline and cannabis instead of giving into that need for instant gratification? The strong urge to satisfy my nicotine craving?
It all came down to my WHY.
Whenever I wanted a cigarette (It didn’t help that I lived right by a little corner market), I stopped and thought about WHY I was quitting.
To prevent my health from getting worse.
To be able to walk up the stairs without feeling like I was dying.
To not have horrible cravings all the time.
To not smell like smoke.
Every time I had to make a decision about not smoking cigarettes and beating nicotine addiction…
I thought about my WHY - my long-term goals.
I’m talking about REALLY thinking about them. I played each reason WHY out in my head like a movie, and imagined myself reaching those goals. I imagined how I would feel. I imagined how much money I’d be saving.
I did that each time, rather than just giving in.
The same motivation strategy applies to running a freelance business.
The BEST way to stay motivated, no matter what, is this:
Know your “WHY.” Know exactly WHY you are doing what you’re doing. Think about your reasons for doing it, rather than the actual task itself.
But, at the same time, it’s not enough to say, “my WHY is because I want to make money.”
Just like it wasn’t enough for me to say “because I want to stop smoking cigarettes.”
It has to be deeper than that.
Say you want to start a freelance photography business.
You set a goal to make $6,000 / month by the end of the sixth month.
Alright. Now, ask yourself:
WHY do you REALLY want this?
“I want to make money” isn’t deep enough.
HOW will running a full-time freelance photography business going to make you a happier person? HOW will it give you a sense of fulfillment?
THAT is going to be your “WHY.”
For most of the freelancers I talk to, their “WHY” is something like:
“So I can stay home with kids and not have to worry about working for someone else.”
“To have a career without a cap to my income, rather than a set salary -- because I can save more, travel more, retire early, etc.”
“Because I don’t want to work a 9-5 ever again.”
“Because I have physical disabilities that make it difficult to work the usual 9-5 job.”
And, I’ll be the first to tell you....
It’s not easy.
When 15 of your cold emails are ignored and / or rejected back-to-back…
When you write a blog post nobody reads…
When you get nasty comments from people trying to bring you down…
When you have a mountain of projects to work on, and are just super overwhelmed…
When physical / mental health conditions are making it seem impossible…
You will want to give up.
UNLESS you continue to fuel your motivation by keeping your “WHY” in the forefront of your mind.
Think about it:
When you’re thinking about how super awesome it’s going to be when you’re traveling to all your dream destinations as a full-time freelance business owner…
Do you HONESTLY think you’re going to give a shit about what some negative person on the Internet said? Or some nasty customer who yelled at you?
Nah. You won’t.
I mean, it might get to you a bit, but it won’t be enough to slow you down. Because those comments and those people don’t matter.
Because, rather than focusing on how difficult the current situation is, close your eyes and think about your “WHY.”
If it’s traveling, for example, you’ll start thinking about what it’s going to be like to:
---> Walk around Ireland and sights-see.
---> Sip espresso outside a cafe in Italy.
---> Run a full-time business from a home office while wearing a Deadpool onesie.
And then you realize....
You’ve got impenetrable battle armor that will protect you from any bullshit that tries to demotivate you as a freelance business owner.
So now. . .
What is an actionable, PRACTICAL step you can take to fuel your motivation when you REALLY don’t want to do anything?
A motivational exercise you can do RIGHT NOW to get crazy inspired to grow your freelance business
Get a piece of paper (or your laptop / phone).
Title your paper (or document):
(Fill in the blank with your task: starting a freelance business, filling all those orders, starting a blog, finishing a client project, etc.)
Now, list your WHY.
Under that, leave space for journaling about your WHY.
For instance, if your WHY is to stay home with your kids…
List the things you want to do with them.
How it will improve things to work from home.
How finally being able to achieve your dream of working from home and be with your kids all day will make you FEEL.
Get descriptive and detailed as possible. You want to FEEL excited as you write your WHY out on the paper.
Every Sunday evening . . .
Before you go to bed - - knowing you’re going to wake up to Monday - - read over this paper.
Reflect on it.
This may sound cheesy, but I can tell you without hesitation:
This. REALLY DOES work.
So, if you care about growing your freelance business, set aside a couple of minutes RIGHT NOW (seriously, don’t wait) and do this.
...You’re already fueling the motivation!