Many entrepreneurs start a business out of passion only to lose that spark amid the day-to-day stresses involved with operations, finances, and administrative tasks. Does that sound like something you’re currently experiencing? Don’t despair. You can regain that spark by following the techniques that will help you restore your business mojo.
Avoid and overcome burnout
When you’ve lost passion for your small business it’s most likely because you’re overwhelmed, stressed, and exhausted. In other words, you’re burnt out.
To be fair, it happens to the best of us. In a recent survey by TSheets by Quickbooks, nearly 50 percent of small business owners reported working more than 40 hours per week. Since we dedicate ourselves 100 percent to our businesses, it’s the only thing that we live and breathe for. The thing is, you can only maintain that lifestyle for so long. You need to have a healthy work-life balance and make the time to do things that have absolutely nothing to do with your business.
The good news is that if you’re aware of this, you can avoid burnout by paying attention to signs like:
- Your health has a taken a turn for the worse
- You’re having trouble focusing
- You haven’t set boundaries and are always saying yes
- Work is your entire life
If you noticed any of these signs, then you should take the following steps to avoid burnout from happening:
- Set boundaries, such as saying no to taking on a new client when you’re already spread thin and having defined work hours
- Make time for you to recharge, like planning a vacation, exercising regularly, or going off-the-grid during weekends
- Get plenty of sleep and eat a healthy diet
- Set goals and priorities so that you’re organized and can prioritize tasks
- Accept client, customers, and projects that interest you. For example, maybe you want to start a new ad campaign focusing on instructional YouTube videos
- Learning how to delegate so that you reduce your workload
- Using productivity and automation tools to increase your productivity
The same TSheets survey also found that more than half of respondants rarely or never take sick days. Avoiding and overcoming burnout won’t solve all of your problems, but it’s a start in reducing stress and encouraging you to back away from the business so that you can actually enjoy your life.
Stop doing tasks and processes you hate
As a business owner there are going to be tasks that you’re not a fan of. The worst part? You didn’t expect that you would spend a majority of your time doing tasks like payroll, invoicing, emailing customers or vendors, hiring new employees, handling customer service inquiries, and scheduling appointments and meetings.
Instead of doing these tasks that you dread, you can either delegate them to someone else, such as an employee or spouse, outsource them to freelancers, or use automation so that these repetitive tasks are done for you automatically.
Any of these methods will reduce your workload, particularly on the tasks that you can’t stand, so that you can focus on more of the big-picture tasks that will help your business grow.
Find a mentor
You can have a mentor during any stage of being a business owner. And, that does include when you’re a bit of a slump. A mentor can provide advice and tips on how you can get unstuck because they’re been there themselves.
Even having a cup of coffee with someone that you admire or reading a book from an inspirational entrepreneur can help reignite that fire you that you first had for your small business.
Shake things up
Another cause for losing passion for your small business is because you’re doing the same thing day in and day out. When things start to get monotonous, give your system a little shock. It could be anything from changing-up your daily routine, creating new business ideas, reaching out to a new target audience, creating a guerilla marketing campaign, moving to a new location, or signing up for a course that will teach a new skill that you could bring to the business.
In short, shake things up. Embrace innovation so that you can bring fresh ideas to your business.
3-part passion “recipe”
Speaking of shaking things up, this advice comes from Marie Forleo. And, it’s pretty much perfect.
According to Marie, the best way to regain your passion is by mixing-up the following recipe to create what she calls the “Everlasting Passion-tini.”
One part turning pro. This means accepting and overcoming resistance, such as self-doubt. Once you do, you won’t give-up when you question your decision. You’ll use that as motivation to move forward.
One part big vision. Make sure that you have an idea that you’re so emotionally connected with that it will pull you ahead no matter what’s thrown your way.
One part staying hungry. Focus on what motivates or excites you about your business and use that to guide you when you’ve lost your passion. And, don’t about it to death. It’s an effective way to trick yourself into thinking that you’re making progress.
If you believe that you’re lost that passion for your small business you can regain it by overcoming burnout, focusing on tasks that you enjoy, connecting with a mentor, and embracing innovation. You also need to realize that self-doubt is a natural part of the creative process and to use that as motivation. And, don’t forget to focus on the long-term by thinking about what excites you, along as what your vision was for your business.
If that doesn’t work and you’re not just able to reignite that spark, you may have to change businesses altogether.