How To Stay Motivated As An Entrepreneur

Startup Stock Photos
Startup Stock Photos

We all have those things that even in the midst of stress and disarray, they energize us and give us renewed strength and purpose.

—Adam Braun (founder of Pencils of Promise)

If you’re not motivated, you won’t create great work.

It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day grind of running a business. Sometimes you just don’t feel like getting up and going to work. The following will help serve as a quick motivational tool whenever you feel like you’re not giving it all you have.

Here are three things to think about to keep you motivated:

  1. What do you hate about being an employee?

Avoiding pain is often the biggest motivator to get people to take action. If you don’t give it your best and get your company moving, what’s going to happen? You’ll end up having to go get a job again. It’s time for having a bad boss, working to make someone else wealthy, not being challenged, having a terrible schedule, and not being paid what you’re worth. Is that enough of a kick in the pants to get you working? Write down the five things you hate most about being an employee. You don’t ever want to go back here! Make these as painful as possible!

  1. Why did you start?

If the stick didn’t work, try the carrot. Why did you want to be an entrepreneur? What are you doing to help people through your business? What is your One Word and how are you able to leverage it to make a better life for you, your family, and the people around you? Write down five positive things that get you excited about your business. You can also include testimonials from happy clients if they are charged with emotion and make you feel good.

  1. What do you want to be remembered for?

Think about what you want to accomplish in life. What kind of impact do you want to have? Money is only a motivator for so long and won’t buy you happiness. How do you want to be remembered? What do you want your grandkids to learn about you? Write down five things that you want to accomplish through your business. These should be aspirational and get you pumped up. Remember, none of these things will happen if you don’t start giving your business 100 percent right now!

The next time you’re feeling sluggish or down, refer to these points. If they don’t kick you out of your funk, you need to work at them. Otherwise you’ll quit and soon be back slaving away for someone else.

Another tactic I use is to look at motivational quotes from three of my heroes: Steve Jobs, Oprah Winfrey, and Tony Robbins.


Believe that things will work out . . . follow your intuition and curiosity . . . trust your heart even when it leads you off the well- worn path . . . You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future . . . The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it . . . Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.


What I know for sure is that if you want to have success, you can’t make success your goal. The key is not to worry about being successful, but to instead work toward being significant—and the success will naturally follow . . . If you do work that you love, and work that fulfills you, the rest will come. And, I truly believe, that the reason I’ve been able to be so financially successful is because my focus has never, ever for one minute been money. Would you do your job and not be paid for it? I would do this job, and take on a second job just to make ends meet if nobody paid me. That’s how you know you are doing the right thing.


A real decision is measured by the fact that you’ve taken a new action. If there’s no action, you haven’t truly decided . . . The most important thing you can do to achieve your goals is to make sure that as soon as you set them, you immediately begin to create momentum. The most important rules that I ever adopted to help me in achieving my goals were those I learned from a very successful man who taught me to first write down the goal, and then to never leave the site of setting a goal without first taking some form of positive action toward its attainment . . . For changes to be of any true value, they’ve got to be lasting and consistent. Any time you sincerely want to make a change, the first thing you must do is to raise your standards . . . If you don’t set a baseline standard for what you’ll accept in life, you’ll find it’s easy to slip into behaviors and attitudes or a quality of life that’s far below what you deserve . . . Whatever happens, take responsibility . . . The only thing that’s keeping you from getting what you want is the story you keep telling yourself. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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