Just like summer turns to fall and fall morphs into winter, your enthusiasm and drive to follow your passion can go through a similar journey. You may start out with a sunny outlook on your new venture, but (sadly) it can quickly grow cold. Here’s how it can play out: You hit your first problem. Things don’t go with way that you think they will. You encounter a stumbling block and you begin to wonder, “Is this really what I should be doing?”
First, you need to get over the guilt. You are your own boss. You set your own schedule. You work with people that you like. You should be totally happy all of the time, right? Think again. Sometimes entrepreneurs feel guilty about being disappointed or let down. So many others dream of owning their own business it can be hard to accept when you’ve lost your passion.
Want to know the good news in all this? All entrepreneurs go through this cycle. It’s part of the creative process. Even if you’re in an industry that you wouldn’t necessarily consider to be “creative,” the pattern is the same—enthusiasm, let down, and then reconnecting. This third step—reconnecting with your passion for your business—is the most important and most often ignored.
Here’s how to get over the guilt, rekindle your passion and inject new life into your business.
Mix up your morning routine
It’s easy to get into the entrepreneurial trap of waking up, pouring a cup of coffee and then getting to work in your pajamas. Nothing saps passion more than your fuzzy bunny slippers. Pajamas and other lounge clothes aren’t good for motivation. Switch up your morning routine. Before you sit down at the computer, try walking around the block, journaling or at least changing into work casual clothes.
Focus just on what you love
You’re great at several parts of your business. But you may be less than great at other parts. These boring parts can suck the passion right out of you. Find ways to be shift your roles as business owner. Outsource or barter with another small business owner for the blog parts of your business that can suck the passion out of your days.
Get the whole gang involved
If you have a team, set up a weekly or monthly call and have everyone share what they love most about what they do. Sharing happy stories about the work that you do together, including customer testimonials and awesome feedback, can help you all feel more passionate and fulfilled
Seek out support
When your enthusiasm starts to wane, you might withdraw from others in order to find the passion within. This can help at times (see above), but connections with other entrepreneurs or like-minded people help keep the spark going with your business. Build relationships with people who can make you feel energized, inspired and help you find new ways to look at old problems. Seek out support from other entrepreneurs, friends in other industries or even online contacts. The key? Don’t isolate yourself!
Your ride as an entrepreneur will take a lot of ups and downs, and though that your passion for your business may wane from time to time, it doesn’t have to disappear forever. Inject new life with these ideas—or come up with your own! Share your best tips in the comments below.