Lighting the Spark

It’s not easy running a small business. Economic conditions change. Technology changes. Trends change. And sometimes it gets hard to hold on to your motivation. It’s no wonder a lot of people give up on their dreams.

The fact is, even if you are lucky enough to have great helpers, keeping yourself moving toward your goals is still up to you.

The first thing you need to do is set short, medium and long-term goals. Write them down and review them from time to time to see the progress you’re making. Celebrate your achievements, no matter how small they may seem. Keep in mind that there are many ways to measure success.
Lighting the SparkDecide what matters to you. Ask yourself why you started, and what part of the business gives you the most satisfaction. Then you can make decisions with priority on the part that means most to you, and stop stressing yourself out over things that are less important. This doesn’t mean you can ignore the tasks you don’t like, but they don’t need to be the focus of all your attention.

Nobody is good at everything. In every business there will inevitably be some requirements you simply can’t meet on your own. Trying to do these things makes you focus too much on your weaknesses and can drain your enthusiasm and commitment to the business. When you need help, be smart by choosing people whose strengths allow you to make the most of YOUR strengths.

Stay connected. No matter how much you like being in charge, you still need the stimulation and companionship of other people. Privacy is often important, but ideas can’t grow or develop in complete isolation. Support groups, whether¬†online or off,¬†allow you to learn about new trends and provide opportunities to connect with others who are in similar businesses as yours.

Keep up with what’s happening in the world around you. Follow the news, talk with people inside and outside your industry, and stay abreast of changes that could affect you. You may notice opportunities you wouldn’t have seen before. You may realize that things are better than you thought once you see how others are doing.

And finally, make sure that you’re doing something you’re passionate about. Love is the best motivator of all!

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