How to Stay Motivated as a Startup Business Owner

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As an entrepreneur and startup business owner, your day-to-day motivation is your fuel. During the early stages and ideation, motivation is never in short supply. It’s one of those feelings that seems like it will last forever, but the truth is that eventually, the spark will fade.

Starting a new business can feel like a relationship, where there is a honeymoon stage with seemingly endless inertia. However, once the ball gets rolling and the “new” starts to feel like everyday work, finding that much-needed inspiration can be tough.

Compared with everyday business knowledge like accounting and bookkeeping or figuring out the best payroll service, finding motivation can take a back seat. The truth is that relearning that initial inspiration is what keeps your business afloat and pushes you towards the extra effort needed to succeed. It’s a crucial part of being an entrepreneur, and it’s why so many successful business owners are adamant about motivation.

As the wise man Mark Cuban once said about why people fail in business:

“Lack of brains, lack of effort”

Brains and Effort

What Mr. Cuban here is trying to display is about more than just being smart and hardworking — it’s about motivation. Nobody wakes up in the morning as an expert in their field, industry, or business. Instead, they spend countless hours learning and attempting to better their company through the tactics they discover — and the effort to discover them.

At the heart of all this intellect and effort is motivation. It’s difficult to learn and put your blood, sweat, and tears into something that you’re not passionate about. So, how can you reignite your once blazing fire and rediscover the fuel to keep the candle burning bright?

Well, that’s what we’re here to help you with.

1. Mornings Are the Most Important Time of the Day

As an entrepreneur, mornings are the golden hour. Yes, waking up early does help you have more access to a longer workday — but it’s also when you’re most productive, according to many studies.

Instead of spending that breakfast and pre-work time to scroll social media feeds — this can be a time to dive into detail-oriented work when your brain is at its peak performance. Or, you can take advantage of the morning for a rejuvenating workout so that once your day is done, you don’t have to go into your motivational reserves to exercise.

Take advantage of those AM hours, and you’ll be amazed at how you feel come lunchtime. Getting started early in the morning will help you to know that you’ve accomplished a significant amount before most of your colleagues have even rolled out of bed.

2. Small Wins Build Great Victories

Being an entrepreneur and startup business owner is competitive; there’s no getting around that. Outside of competing with other businesses — there’s always the never-ending game with yourself. Losses never go unnoticed, but many times, small wins do.

In order to stay motivated, it’s crucial to recognize and rejoice in the little wins along the way. Obviously, massive sales, deals, or victories will inevitably be a cause for celebration — but these don’t come every single day.

Little wins are what build successful enterprises. Every seemingly minuscule victory ends up helping you achieve your goals — so don’t let them be ignored. No matter how small, recognizing these little wins can help keep you inspired to grow and move closer to your objectives. Even something like choosing your next business accounting software should be celebrated.

3. Create Realistic Goals

Missing the mark or a goal can really take a toll on your motivation. For many entrepreneurs and startup business owners, this comes from creating absurd or unrealistic goals. We understand the sentiment behind “go big or go home,” but with creating goals, that’s a losing strategy.

Start small and work your way up. You can even start with laughably minuscule goals to get started. It can be as simple as reading your emails every morning or making sure to check in with your core team. Outside of your personal goals, your business goals should also be attainable. There’s no shame in reaching your small goals — even if you see others around you shooting for the moon.

Goal-setting is just as much about maintaining motivational momentum as it is succeeding.

4. Keep Inspiration On-Hand

Inspiration can come from anywhere, but when you’re feeling unmotivated, it can be difficult to search out. Keep a healthy dose of daily motivation nearby so that when you’re feeling your reserves run dry, you can find what you need. You can always seek out some business blogs or entrepreneurial articles every now and again, but where else can you turn? Here are some tips:

One surefire way to end up complacent and without daily motivation is to surround yourself with complacent and unmotivated people. It makes sense, right?

As we mentioned, the startup business world is incredibly competitive. Bringing out the best in yourself means surrounding yourself with people who motivate you to get better. Surround yourself with higher standards, which will inevitably elevate your game — bringing you up to par with an entirely new echelon of business owners.

5. Don’t Be the Best in Your Circle

One surefire way to end up complacent and without daily motivation is to surround yourself with complacent and unmotivated people. It makes sense, right?

As we mentioned, the startup business world is incredibly competitive. Bringing out the best in yourself means surrounding yourself with people who motivate you to get better. Surround yourself with higher standards, which will inevitably elevate your game — bringing you up to par with an entirely new echelon of business owners.

Find Your Motivation

We hope this gives you some additional tools and ammunition to find the inspiration you need to push through. Being a startup business owner makes you the underdog. While that can be a serious motivator for some during the early stages, it can become exhausting — especially as you grow and your passion needs to be contagious.

Use some of the tips we’ve covered today and bring them into your everyday life. Make them part of your routine, and before you know it, you will be generating your own motivation — and inspiration for the rest of your company.

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