You know you’re supposed to be online, spreading goodness and helping other people. But, what if you don’t feel like that means starting your own business? Have you considered the possibility of helping someone else build their business? Maybe you don’t want the non-stop ideas running through your mind. Maybe you don’t want to (or can’t) invest the time and/or money to grow a business. Maybe you just don’t have the support at home. Whatever the reason, perhaps becoming a virtual assistant is the right path for you. Today I’m chatting with MY virtual assistant about what it takes to be a great VA.
077_7 ways to find the motivation to work on your business
The Goodness Squad Podcast Episode #77
You had your great idea and spent all your time and energy working on it. You got the ball moving, but then all the excitement started to wear off. Now you face the reality that in order to move your business forward and actually make money, it will require consistent effort. I’ve been there, that phase where the reality is not as exciting as the initial burst of energy. Here are 7 ways I have found to find some motivation to continue working on your business when you just don’t feel like it.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Today we are going to be talking about how to find the motivation to actually spend time working on your business.
This episode is part of a bonus season of The Goodness Squad podcast. I wasn’t planning on creating this season, but I was prompted by emails and messages that I got from you. Wondering if you should quit? Many of you have contacted me with that question recently. Should I quit? Am I meant to be online? Am I really in the right space?
In episode #73, I addressed this question. Should I quit? How do I know if I’m supposed to keep going? If you have not yet listened to that episode, go back and listen to it first. The rest of the episodes in season six, I’m talking about what to do if you decided to keep pushing forward in your business. Just because you’ve decided to stay online and you know that this is where you’re supposed to be, that doesn’t automatically make it easy. There are still real obstacles and real challenges to being a Latter-day Saint mompreneur. Because you’re someone who cares about your business, but who cares even more about her family and her commitment to her Heavenly parents.
TIP #1 Think About Your End Game
My very first tip for increasing your motivation is to think about your end game. What do I mean by this? Well, can you imagine going on vacation with no destination? You just get in the car and you start driving, but you don't really know where you're going. You know that you want to spend time away, you know that you want to take a break from your regular life, but you don't actually have a destination. You don't actually have anything to look forward to, to get excited about.
I see this happen to a lot of women, particularly Latter-day Saint mompreneurs. When they start a podcast or a blog or an Instagram account, they know that they want to help people. They know that they want to have a business, but they don't really know what the end game looks like.
- Who do you want to help?
- Why do you want to help them?
- What problems are you going to solve for them?
- How are the solutions to those problems going to improve their lives?
- What will this look like for your family?
- What will you do with the money that you earn?
If you don't have the answers to these questions, you don't have an end game. You don't really know what you're working toward. So that's my very first tip to increasing your motivation, make sure that you have a very clear end game, or reason, for being in this business. A goal, something that you're trying to accomplish, both for your own family and for those that you want to serve and help, what do you want to help them accomplish?
Tip #2 One Step At A Time
One thing that keeps us from being motivated is procrastination. I see this a lot with my two seventh grade boys. They have struggled because they feel so overwhelmed. Everything seems so huge, like a big project. But when we can help them break it down into tiny little steps, they suddenly feel like it is more doable.
Instead of saying something like, I want to start a podcast - and then you put that off for weeks and weeks and months, and maybe even years, because it feels so big and hard - break it down into tiny steps.
What is the first step to starting a podcast? Maybe the first step is joining Ask Me Anything so that you can get answers to your questions as you work through the starting a podcast prep process. Maybe the first step is buying a course from Pat Flynn on how to start a podcast.
The next step is to ask your very first question in Ask Me Anything or to watch the very first module of Pat Flynn's course. I want you to take it tiny step by tiny step and break it down. Then you can look at your list for this big project you have to do and if you've got 10 minutes, you could do that first step - sign up. And then once you've done that, when you have an hour to work on that project, you could do the first module of a course.
You will get much more accomplished if you break your really big tasks down into two or three tiny little parts of the tiniest little steps. If you're still feeling overwhelmed by a step, it's too big. Break it down even more.
The second part of creating this plan is to review it. I'm not perfect at it, but I try to review my bigger plans every evening. I plan weekly, but every evening I look over what I am supposed to do tomorrow. So that when I wake up, I don't have to give any of my energy to planning what I'm going to do that day. I already know what it is that I have planned and what I want to get accomplished that day.
Tip #3 Act like you are motivated
It's incredible how this works. I have a playlist on my phone called Moms Pick Me Ups. The whole purpose of this playlist is to get me motivated. I do struggle with depression and anxiety, and sometimes that becomes overwhelming. And all I want to do is crawl in bed and 50% of the time, that's exactly what I do. I go crawl in bed. But I am learning and doing much better at picking myself up.
One of the ways in which I do this is through this playlist. If you would like a link to it, send me a DM on Instagram and I will send you a link to this playlist on Spotify. But simply turning on that playlist, getting up and dancing, gets me motivated. It can very often completely changed my outlook.
Sometimes I will also just force myself to smile for a full minute. I'll just put a smile on my face. If you're watching on YouTube, you can see me smiling. Even if it's kind of a fake smile, it will create endorphins in your body.
Sometimes, I will sit up straight. If I'm slouching over my chair and I don't really feel like working, I'll try to remind myself to sit up straight. I'll put a pillow behind my back and it makes me feel more like I'm at work and I need to get things done.
Sometimes I stand up and I just go take a shower. That helps me reset for the day. I will get dressed if I'm in my pajamas. Sometimes I'll just clap my hands and cheer myself on saying, "You've got this. Go Misty. You can do it." I actually say that out loud. I know it seems so silly, but that will sometimes motivate me to keep going and to press forward on a day where I just don't really feel like doing anything.
Commercial Break - Melanie Papworth | Plan For Awesome
MISTY: Let's take just a minute for our unique commercial break where I highlight one of you. Today I want to tell you about Melanie Papworth of Plan For Awesome. Interestingly, Melanie and I used to be competitors when I had an emergency preparedness website.
She has a website called PlanForAwesome.com where she teaches about emergency preparedness. And if I dare say, her e-book on 72 hour kits is way better, 10 times better, than my e-book that you bought. The one I spent 18 months creating. Her e-book is way better, off the charts better.
She has done such an incredible job. She's very talented in her attention to detail and her ability to organize and to help you get organized and take tiny little baby steps with your preparedness. Let's take just a minute to hear from Melanie.
MELANIE: Hi, I'm Melanie and I run the website Plan For Awesome. I help busy moms tackle their emergency preparedness. I am not a doomsday prepper. I don't do any of the hardcore, crazy stuff. I am more about helping families use the space and the budget and the resources that they have, to do the things that would make the biggest impact on their preparedness.
I really believe that it doesn't matter how big your house is or how big your budget is. There are things that we can be doing to better equip our children and our families and our homes, to be more prepared in general.
I am hanging out mainly on Instagram these days. So come find me there at Plan For Awesome. I would love to meet you. I would love to know where you are with your emergency preparedness. If you haven't done anything, if you just feel paralyzed when you hear those words, that's why I'm here. I'm here to break it down and make it simple and organized and give you hope. That is my main goal.
I'm really passionate about helping people who don't know where to start. So I hope that you will come find me and we can do this together. See you soon.
MISTY: If you want more from Melanie head to PlanForAwesome.com hit her 'start here' button, and she will tell you exactly where to start with your emergency preparedness. It's very likely not where you think. She has a unique and, surprisingly, refreshing approach. You can also find her at Plan For Awesome on YouTube, where she goes live every single Monday with tips for you.
TIP #4 Redefine Failure
Step four for increasing your motivation is to change how you talk to yourself about failure. Can you see it as a teacher instead?
Have you ever failed a test at school? I have. I have done very poorly on tests at school, on occasion. And I've seen my kids do the same and this can be so discouraging.
I think it feels very similar to when we launch a product and it doesn't go as well as we want to. In our business, it feels like we failed a test, but I want to read you something from Elder Bednar. He said this in his talk 'We will prove them herewith' in the October, 2020 session of General Conference. He said,
"An effective test helps us to compare what we need to know with what we actually know about a specific subject."
I love this definition of a test. I have used it again and again with my kids since he gave this talk, because I think it is so refreshing. A test doesn't define us. Failing a test is not failure, simply an opportunity to figure out what we know and what we don't yet know. So if you fail at something in your business - your launch doesn't go as expected, you can't get your email system up and working, you aren't making as many sales as you want.
I want you to ask yourself questions like: What can I learn? What will I do differently? Why didn't this work? I also want you to stop throwing out the baby with the bath water. What do I mean by this? I mean you don't have to completely start over just because a product didn't sell well.
More often than not, it isn't a problem with the actual product. Maybe it's a problem with your messaging, meaning how you describe the product to other people. Maybe it's a problem with the benefits that you choose to highlight on your sales page about the product. Maybe it's how you're delivering the product and maybe people want it audio instead of video or in a written format instead of audio. Maybe it's how you follow up with the purchase. Are you simply sending people the product and then not giving them any encouragement and support afterward?
There are a lot of things that you can tweak that will take a lot less time than completely starting over. So instead of throwing the product out entirely and starting over from ground zero, which is going to become exhausting, I want you to see that failure not as final, but simply as an opportunity for you to learn how you can improve that specific product.
Tip #5 Keep The Spirit With You
I want you to do all you can to keep the spirit with you. The spirit can motivate and inspire us. I know when I'm feeling truly inspired about what I can do to help you in your business, I am excited. I am incredibly motivated. But there is something that kills spirituality.
I want to tell you a story to emphasize this point and I'm actually just going to read this from my friend, Darla Trendler of Spiritually Minded Women. I'm going to read you something that she recently posted on Instagram. She said this,
"I've been burning the candle at both ends lately with the podcast, my church calling, a major remodeling project, helping children move both in and out to college and one of those kids leaving on a mission in three weeks, and end of the school year stuff for the other two.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Did I mention I'm tired?⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
One day last week I had spent the whole day painting my kitchen. I got down from the ladder, looked up and was so frustrated by the edging around the ceiling. It wasn't looking great and I really wanted it to be crisp and sharp. I was tempted to get back up on the ladder and fix it but then I had a thought, something I heard a bishop say many years ago.
"Fatigue is the enemy to spirituality."
I was tired and I decided I just needed to go to bed and deal with my crooked paint lines in the morning. I woke up the next morning and walked into my kitchen. With a rested body and spirit, I looked up at my troublesome paint lines and had instant inspiration about how to fix them. These thoughts were ideas that hadn't even been on my radar the night before when I was so tired. I ran to Home Depot for a new tool, got back up on the ladder and fixed the issue in about 20 minutes.
The moral of this story is there's a connection between our physical body and our spirits. I believe the inspiration about how to fix my paint problem came through divine inspiration, but I needed to take care of my body before I could be receptive to the Spirit."
I want you to consider that if you are really feeling run down in your business, like you just can't find the motivation and you're so tired, maybe you need to take a rest so that the spirit can come back into your life and give you the direction you need in your business. That will feel motivating and inspiring and exciting.
Tip #6 Commit Publicly
These last two tips are a little bit bigger and bolder, but they have really helped me in my business. The first is to commit to deadlines publicly. If you say you're going to have a product launch by a specific date date, tell your audience that because you will then be far more motivated to get it done on time.
This is extrinsic motivation. Instead of intrinsic coming from inside of ourselves, it's coming from outside. When we know that people might be frustrated or annoyed if we don't reach a deadline, we become more motivated to reach it. Whenever possible, commit to deadlines in your business publicly.
Tip #7 Spend Money
Tip seven is to spend money on your business. I know this is controversial. I know that you don't want to spend money on your business, but when you do so it becomes a business. When you refuse to spend money, sacrifice, and stretch yourself (just a little bit) with the amount of money you're spending on your business, your motivation will stay low. You don't have any skin in the game.
I want to read you something from a friend, her name's Courtney, and she is a copywriter. We will link to her Instagram profile in the show note. She says,
"Yesterday, I batch recorded five podcast episodes. Until now I've been recording episodes week by week from my one bedroom apartment. I had to negotiate times to record when my husband wasn't home making noise, on calls, et cetera.
Last week I found and booked a recording studio for four hours. I paid for a recording studio this morning. I woke up and figured out what the episodes would be. And then I sat and got to it. Sometimes you can try all the productivity hacks in the world, but what you really need is to spend money, to create accountability for yourself."
This is so important ladies! When you invest money in your business and it hurts just a little bit, you are more accountable because you've got some skin in the game. You are far more likely to sit down and work, even when you don't feel like it.
To review, our seven tips are: 1) make sure you know what your end game is 2) create a plan by breaking things down into tiny little steps 3) act like you're motivated, even when you aren't 4) change how you talk to yourself about failure 5) make sure you have the spirit with you, don't give in to burnout 6) commit publicly with deadlines and 7) spend money on your business.
Join Ask Me Anything
If you would like to spend money and get some public accountability all in one, I would invite you to join my Ask Me Anything group where I can help hold you accountable to your goals. You will be spending money so you will have some skin in the game. You can find out more about that group at DesignForGoodness.com/askmeanything.
In the next episode, we are going to be talking with Ceri from Ceri Payne Coaching. She is an expert in time management and strategic scheduling for female business owners. I'm bringing her on to finish out this bonus season to help us really dig deep into how can we organize our businesses so that they're more streamlined. So that we're able to stay motivated and spend the time we want to spend with our families.
Know someone who could benefit from this episode? Share it with them!
create a Homepage that makes you money
The Homepage MAP Method Makeover
Join me as I makeover a client’s actual homepage using the MAP (Money And Progress) method
The webinar is 80 minutes long. Choose a time when you know you’ll be able to watch the whole thing. It’s worth it!
My email subscribers are my VIPs. After the Homepage Makeover, I’ll continue to spoil you with exclusive content, time-sensitive deals, regular updates on podcast episodes and more. No spam. No giving your email to anyone else. Pinky Promise.
You Might Also Like:
It is possible to grow your business, make money and spread goodness. Misty Marsh shares 21 tips for finding the time to do all three.
So you feel like you’re supposed to keep building your business. You’re confident in that decision. You put in the hours, you create the awesome products and content, but you’re still just not seeing the results you are hoping for. What now? Move your business forward with these five smart tips.
If you loved this episode, please share it!