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This is a guide on motivation for entrepreneurs, but I want to make something very clear.
If you expect me to feel sorry for you because you are stuck with your dreams, say you have the power to change and suggest that you live in the present to solve the situation, you can leave here because I am not going to do it.
As if getting up one day and sending the excuses for the toilet will really work, hoping that as of today everything will be different and you will begin to strive to achieve your goals.
I have done it, not once or twice or three times, many. So many that I don’t know how many they are. The only thing that happens is that my mind makes a new string of excuses to not work in my business when I know I should be working on it.
Fortunately, I have found several tricks that do work and I share them all in this guide.
Before continuing, download your guide in PDF format so you can print it and check how many times you want.
This is what you will learn:
When you finish implementing it, you will feel inspired and excited to work in your business day after day, even if there is no grumpy boss forcing you to do it.
I was reading a book called The Compound Effect.
It tells the story of Lance Armstrong, a cyclist who won the Tour de France in 2009.
Imagine the situation.
In flat terrain you are the star, but the Tour de France is a mountain race and the thing does not look good at all.
You have been riding uphill for five and a half hours. There is rain, fog and hail. You are freezing, literally.
You can barely breathe. Your arms and legs burn with pain. You feel that you can no more. Then, you realize that your opponents are in the same situation.
You give up? Or do you hit the pedals harder?
Most of the participants gave up but Lance pushed with his whole being and left the competitors behind, becoming the champion.
This is what he shares in his biography:
In every race there is a moment when the cyclist faces his real opponent and realizes that he is himself … in my most painful moments on the bike, it is when I become more curious, and every time it happens I wonder
How will I respond?
Will I discover that I have a great weakness or will I find my greatest strength?
Your body is exhausted and your mind says it can no longer. You know you must continue, but at the same time you want to give up.
This moment of truth is known as the wall in the world of sports.
The decision you make is what determines if you become stronger or get stuck in mediocrity.
You will experience several of these proverbial walls with your entrepreneurship, when you will have to decide if you will fight to continue and achieve your goals or you will invent pretexts that justify your failure:
We all get tired, we fail , we have limited time, we run out of money and we doubt how to do things…. But it doesn’t matter, because we continue and eventually succeed.
My mentor Todd Brown summarizes the attitude you should have as an entrepreneur in a very successful way:
You can have excuses or you can succeed, but you can’t have both. The most successful find a way in spite of everything.
Next you will learn how to get rid of pretexts.
Understanding what motivates you will help you understand why you deflate like a struck out balloon every time you want to reach a goal with your business.
According to Wikipedia:
The word motivation derives from the Latin motivus or motus, which means ‘cause of movement ‘ … can be defined as the signal or emphasis that is discovered in a person towards a certain means of satisfying a need, creating or thereby increasing the necessary momentum so that it puts into work that means or that action , or so that it stops doing it.
Other authors define motivation as the dynamic root of behavior ; that is, the internal factors or determinants that incite an action .
From this great text, we can summarize that motivation is an impulse, a cause of movement.
Later, Wikipedia mentions another interesting thing:
Motivation can be conceived as a cycle in which thoughts influence behaviors, behaviors lead to performance, performance impacts thoughts and the cycle begins again.
Each stage of the cycle consists of many dimensions that include states, beliefs, intentions, efforts, and withdrawals, and all of this can affect the motivation that an individual experiences.
I made a drawing so you understand how it works.
Now I’m going to get philosophical.
Take a minute to think about the cycles you experience day by day. The sun rises in the morning and is stored at night, the four seasons of the year, months, birth and death of living beings.
These events begin, grow, reach a climax, slow down and end.
If motivation is a cycle, you should also follow a similar process. That means it is not permanent.
Typical tips say that the enthusiasm is up to you, that it is enough to light an incense, repeat positive affirmations and do yoga to keep your momentum awake, but the situation is a bit deeper.
A study by the USC Mind and Society Center found that if the deadline to achieve a goal is extended by more than 90 days, the level of procrastination increases.
Todd Herman, a business coach for Fortune 500 companies, suggests renewing your goals every 90 days. Thus, you keep your determination to the fullest.
These 90-day cycles are also recommended for the treatment of addictions 404 , dieters and high-performance athletes.
You are not completely guilty for the apathy and laziness you feel when working in your business. You simply experience the end of a cycle, the closure of a natural process.
To continue, all you have to do is refresh your goals and start a new cycle every 3 months.
Within the greater cycle of motivation that lasts 90 days, there are smaller cycles.
Think of a daily day. In the morning you want to work on several projects, but when the afternoon comes, you feel down.
You just want to throw yourself on the couch to eat vanilla ice cream while you get lost watching the photos on Instagram of your best friend’s cousin, who is now traveling through Malaysia.
Now think about your week. On Monday you have laziness. When Wednesday arrives you get excited making plans for the end, Thursday you pass quickly and on Friday you feel super energetic, thinking about Saturday night.
In this simple example, we have just gone through a whirlwind of emotions that depend largely on the different stages of your day or your week.
You cannot make Monday become Wednesday, but there are several factors that you can control and that will help you be motivated, regardless of what the clock and calendar say.
I live in a city where the streets look like roller coaster (for so many ups and downs there are).
When I learned to drive I had a standard car
I was terrified of getting stuck in the red light of the traffic lights!
The car was going backwards or turned off before it managed to accelerate. The other drivers, played the horn in despair and shouted things at me to move.
I would also have liked to move forward and stop obstructing traffic, but I couldn’t!
That was 10 years ago. Now I can start up without any problem. From repeating the maneuver, it has become instinctive.
Your mind and body function by habits and routines. They are small sequences of actions that reproduce automatically.
Throughout the day you perform hundreds of habits without realizing it, which are slowly shaping the results you experience in your life:
We have already seen that motivation is a volatile phenomenon, you cannot trust it when you have a business to build.
If you want to stay in action, you must create habits and routines that help you renew it (such as refreshing your goals every 90 days) and encourage you to keep moving.
The most important habits are divided into 4 areas:
Think of these areas as if they were pillars. When a failure fails, your motivation collapses.
In Mexico we have two types of gasoline: Magna and Premium. Mechanics recommend the Premium, because it is of higher quality.
When you put Magna or worse, Patito gasoline to your car, you don’t let the engine run at full capacity.
Your body is like a car. You can have the best productivity strategies, plan, set goals, repeat mantras as deranged and spend half a day visualizing, but your results depend largely on the fuel you enter into your body.
I do not want to enter into a great debate about food but I am going to share what worked for me.
Of all the diets I’ve tried, vegan , with a lot of raw foods gives me energy and mental clarity.
When for some reason like sugar, flour, coffee or I overdo fried and processed foods I regret it. Once the pleasure of eating them goes down, I feel lethargic and without energy.
I can’t say what is right for you, but pay attention to what you eat and how it affects you.
In this article from Río Negro , you will find suggestions on some foods that will help you feel active throughout the day.
Rest includes four aspects: sleep, day breaks, vacations and offline time.
Last year I started keeping a productivity diary. I had to write down my sleep hours and observe how they impacted my energy level and my focus.
It was a revealing exercise.
I realized that I only slept between 5 and 6 hours. The worst part is that he didn’t even have a good justification for it. At night I would take my cell phone and start looking for things on the Internet that made me curious.
I woke up tired. Getting out of bed in the morning was a martyrdom and the rest of the day I had a total Zombie.
I stopped using the alarm clock for a week and realized that my body needs 9 hours to recover!
I felt as if a large curtain of fog had risen from my head.
I noticed that the cravings for eating sweet things, the anxiety and stress that I typically felt, practically disappeared.
In the gym I could do twice as push-ups.
I kept focused and wanted to work all day. It was 7 o’clock at night and I kept the battery to the maximum.
This sleeping well was a revolution in my life.
If you need more reasons to prioritize the dream, Ceci Saia has a fun video that explains what happens when you don’t sleep ( productivity tip: play the video at double speed to see it in half the time, use the nut icon to find the option).
As of today, I want you to take steps to give the dream the importance it deserves.
An Italian gentleman invented a productivity technique called Pomodoro. It’s about taking 5 minutes of rest for every 25 of work.
The 5 minute pause serves to refresh the head. This helps improve focus, concentration and the desire to continue working.
The first time I heard it, my super productive self came out. I thought this pause would be a great waste of time.
Still, I had read too much about the wonders of this Pomodoro and had to satisfy my curiosity.
I tried it and LOVED it – to the extent that I went to buy a ridiculous cat-shaped kitchen timer to be able to implement it.
The technique matches what Runner’s World says. Spending many hours sitting is just as harmful as smoking . It can create depression, cancer and heart disease. End your physical condition and your brain.
Fortunately, the effects can be reversed by getting up from the chair at least once every hour and making some physical movement.
As I work from home, I take breaks to wash clothes, tidy up the closet or do resistance exercises with a league.
If you work in the office, you can try one of these ideas:
Blogthinkbig has a guide that will help you get started with this Pomodoro. Try different combinations of time and activity to see what works for you.
I worked for a Thai NGO for 4 years. Something I learned from them is the importance of taking vacations.
Once a year, they took us to a paradise island, fed us like kings, put us to meditate and do and gave us massages to relax. It was 15 days of total disconnection, where we couldn’t even think about work issues.
Upon leaving the retreat, my colleagues and I were super motivated to work. We also had a head full of new ideas and projects to move forward.
Last year I quit this job because I wanted to work in my own business. I tend to set goals too ambitious and I want to work 24/7 to achieve them. The only result is that I end up overwhelmed and stressed.
I need a vacation NOW!
Very Interesting explains that holidays are important to maintain motivation and health:
In summary, lack of holidays = Depression and poor health.
I doubt you want to work in your business when you are sick and depressed, so take out the bronzer and go for a walk on the beach.
Many centuries ago, when the iPhone 3 came out, I didn’t understand why people were so obsessed with them.
Why do you need a smartphone when you can do the same on a computer?
One day, my friend saw the cell phone pot. He felt sorry for my situation and gave me an iPhone.
The damn device took possession of me. As soon as it reached my hands, I started to take photos and download applications. From then on, there was no time when I took off the cell phone.
One day the screen thundered and he didn’t know any place where they could fix it. I spent horrible days with my beautiful iPhone made a ruin. For the first time I experienced the anguish it gives when you are disconnected from the world.
That was the beginning of the end.
Every time I had a free moment, I compulsively checked Instagram and Facebook.
Later, the situation worsened, to the extent of ignoring my goals and the work I had, because I was hanging on the Internet.
There came a point where my life literally happened through Facebook.
It was time to change.
I set a limit to my work time (maximum 6 hours), set a day without connection a week, and try not to use the computer or phone after 7 pm.
If you think this is very difficult, I agree. It is!
Do not believe that I get it free of my good will. I had to delete Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest from the phone. I also downloaded an application called Offtime to block it after 7 pm.
On the computer, I use Freedom . You install it in your browser and time programs where you can enter your social networks.
When I try to use Facebook before 5 in the afternoon, I get this screen.
An average person spends 3 hours a day on social networks . To that, add the 6-8 hours you invest in your work and your life practically happens through a monitor.
Now combine the effects of spending a lot of time sitting + the effects of being all day looking at a screen + zero vacations.
The result is a great disaster.
You end your physical condition, you fuck your sight, you make your brain a plasticine ball and you become antisocial.
When I started with offline time, I experienced a strong sense of emptiness. I didn’t know what I could do if I didn’t have a cell phone or a computer in my hands, but little by little I’ve been remembering what my life was like when these things didn’t exist.
I liked reading, jogging, walking my dog, calling my friends on the phone and cooking desserts.
I am trying to get back to it.
EVERYONE, from your mother to the lady who sells chewing gum in the corner shop, we agree.
Exercise is good for you and for your motivation.
By moving your body you release endorphins. Endorphins are like a natural drug, which alters your brain and makes you good without any of the side effects.
Therefore, there are more and more gyms and smiling people who visit them.
When you feel unmotivated, open YouTube and look for some exercise routines. You can choose them based on your time (there are routines of only 5 minutes), or based on the type of activity you like.
Here are other ideas to incorporate some activity into your daily routine:
In adventure movies, there is always a hero, a girl and a villain. The villain steals the girl and the hero has to overcome all kinds of obstacles to rescue her.
If the villain did not steal the girl, the hero would stay at home lying on the couch eating popcorn and watching Netflix series. It would be a mediocre one more.
A Great Why is how the girl in our movie, the reason why you will overcome any obstacle that crosses your path.
When I started this blog, I had only one motivation: to inspire many people to change their lives and have a more positive vision. My idea was to share reflections, guides and tutorials to help you.
I am very visual, so I made a collage so I wouldn’t forget it.
When I lose motivation, it is typically because I forget the Great Why. I put too much importance on what I need (ex. Money to buy clothes or go on a trip), instead of thinking about the mission of inspiring others.
In those moments, I give myself time to reconnect with the initial intention. I take out my collage, reread the comments and emails that I receive from my readers or go to my Pinterest profile and save beautiful images to share.
Small actions like these help me to take perspective and drive me to continue.
The Great Why It is hidden deep within your being. It’s something personal. I like to inspire, but yours may be something like this:
You already know the four pillars of motivation.
When you feel down, check your habits and routines. It is likely that one of them was made a piltrafa. Take the necessary measures to strengthen it and you will see how your motivation soars skyward.
Now, we have to talk about something else: stagnation. Before continuing, download your PDF guide. So you can print it and take notes.
Imagine you are walking on a path. You feel super motivated to reach the end.
Suddenly you run into a wall. If the wall is small, you jump and continue as if nothing.
When the wall measures three meters and seems endless, you stop and sit down to cry. It looks so big and unwavering that you have no idea how to continue.
If you were not on this path, you would not have walls. If there were no walls, you would not feel stuck.
Think of entrepreneurship, as if it were the path of history. The blockages and the feeling of stagnation are inevitable.
You will face several situations that will shatter your motivation. The important thing is that you know how to identify them to give them a solution and be able to continue with your path.
Next, I share the 6 most common causes of stagnation.
I have been thinking for several years that I would like to be certified to teach Yoga. I have not done it for several reasons, but one of the main ones is that I am afraid.
I feel that the certification will be very heavy. Then I start to think that preparing the classes will take too much time. On top of that, I am terrified of making mistakes with some instruction and causing someone to get hurt.
Yesterday I went to my Pilates class, the teacher called to let me know I had a problem and could not arrive. We had four girls in the lounge. Someone suggested that I teach the class.
I accepted the challenge (although it gave me a little nerve), paying special attention so that no one came out crooked from there.
It was super fun.
The fears I had about Yoga certification disappeared. If I could put together something totally improvised, I’m sure I can do better with a little preparation.
The best way to end the fear of the unknown is to take action !!!
This is not about putting yourself in stupid situations. Just think of a little experiment you can do to see if your fears are real or not.
If I asked you to have a conversation with me in Chinese, could you?
Of course not (unless you are Chinese or super gifted for languages).
If you really wanted to try it, you would have to enroll in a class, buy a book and study.
It is obvious, when it comes to speaking in Chinese, but it is not so much when we talk about business.
One of the biggest obstacles my clients face is knowing exactly what they want, but they lack some knowledge to get it.
Fortunately, this is very simple to solve.
Start by defining what knowledge you lack. Maybe you don’t know how to choose the idea for your business, it is difficult for you to get clients, you need tools for the financial part or your Facebook page is a failure and nobody visits it.
Then, look for a book, tutorial or expert to help you solve it.
In this era of Google, you don’t have a pretext to remain stuck in ignorance.
When I was a child, they gave me a bicycle. My mom took me to the park to learn how to use it. He explained to me that I should keep my balance and put the right handlebar.
I’m not stupid, I understood, but putting it into practice was a completely different situation.
When you do a search for information, just get one or two resources that can help you and apply them.
Do not fall for what I call the curse of the eternal seeker – you spend reading tutorial after tutorial, review all the pages you find on Google and fill your library of books, but do not apply any.
These are the four basic skills that every entrepreneur should have and that I teach in my course Do what you love:
If you are missing any of them (or all), you need to ride the bike and start practicing.
Imagine you are standing on the top floor of a building. From there, you can easily get an idea about the streets, avenues, traffic jams and important monuments in your city.
Now imagine you’re standing in a corner of that same city. You can’t see beyond a few meters.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make with your business is getting stuck in the corner, in the immediate perspective of what’s in front.
You need to give yourself time and space to ride the building and draw a route that strategically guides you towards your goals.
There are 2 things that will help you be more strategic.
In the book Tools of Titans , Tim Ferriss analyzes the habits of millionaires, entrepreneurs, high performance athletes and highly successful people.
80% of them practice some kind of meditation.
I’m not surprised. Meditation is the art of turning off your mind for a while, to explore what is inside of you. When you do, your thinking is ordered. Your intuition wakes up and you can see things from a broader perspective.
It also helps you connect with your emotions. To identify them, to be able to work with them instead of fighting against them. It helps to synchronize all parts of you: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.
It is very easy to get lost in the burden and the stress of the run runs. Schedule regular times to sit and think strategically about your business.
Do not leave it for «when you have a little while» because it will not happen.
At this time, take out your calendar and set aside space for it. This one is mine.
I make a reflection at the end of the day where I write down what went well and what went wrong. Then, I use this information to plan the activities of the next day.
This prevents you from dragging the same errors day after day. I do the same exercise every Friday, when I analyze what I did in that week, every 15 days to think about my fortnight, every end of the month and every 90-day cycle.
My mom is an educator. He always says that you should never say phrases to a child like «Oh, how silly you are,» «You can’t,» «You’re a naughty,» or «You’re bad,» because these comments make the child believe that he really deserves the label you gave him. .
Consequently, the child begins to behave in a mischievous, bad way or stops using his ability to be «dumb.»
If you tell the same child, «you are intelligent» the child will strive to do things right and to act as an intelligent person.
Similarly, you have a voice in your head that shapes your reality. It is full of opinions:
In psychology these opinions are known as limiting patterns.
It works like this.
The voice in your head says that you are a fool, consequently you act like a fool and you feel silly, but you don’t realize that you really are not stupid. You have simply had experiences that led you to form the opinion «I am silly».
As soon as you change your belief «I am silly» to «I am intelligent», you begin to behave like a genius.
The problem with these patterns is that you have them so ingrained that they go unnoticed. To change them, you need to identify them and then do a mental reprogramming job.
Victor de Leadership Today explains it very well and has some suggestions that will help you get rid of blockages.
Here are other articles that can help you:
Take a moment to look around. Describe what you observe. Try using many adjectives Already?
That description you just gave me doesn’t really describe the environment. It describes you yourself.
What you are, think and feel is an aggregate of everything around you. Think about it. When you are in the countryside you have a very different attitude to when you are on the beach or in the city.
If you are with your friends, you use a language that you prefer to omit when you are with your parents. Simply having your partner close produces certain emotions and feelings.
In 1981, a group of psychologists took 8 men of 70 years and made them live for five days in some departments that simulated the year 1959. They had black and white televisions where they could watch the programs and films of that time. Every day they received the newspaper with dates and news according to the time.
The old men had to act as if they were really in 1959 and were 20 years younger. In addition, they should talk about what was happening in their life at the time, in the present tense.
By the end of the study , the participants had rejuvenated. They showed greater manual dexterity, sat more upright and their health improved. The study lasted only 5 days but it was enough time for the environment to reverse the effects of age.
When I talk about the environment, I mean the people, objects, ideas, social norms and beliefs that surround you.
Nobody pays attention to them, but everything you do or stop doing plays a decisive role.
You cannot get rid of their influence, but you can be aware of their effect and take steps to turn them in your favor.
Now that you have identified the causes of your stagnation and know how to solve them, it is time to take action. Let’s see how to integrate everything you just read.
In the first section we talk about «Your Great Why», that beacon of light that inspires and guides your path when things get difficult. .
If you don’t have it yet, give yourself a moment to reflect and find out what it is. Take this question as a starting point:
Write everything that comes out.
Then, make a short summary with the most important points.
If you already have a Great Why, just check it to see if there is something you would like to change.
Once you are clear, you can write it down on a card to always bring with you or you can represent it in an image. Get creative with it, the idea is that you always have it at hand.
Above I showed you a collage that I made to represent my Great Why.
The truth is that I was excited for two more.
Where would you like to be in six months?
Write how are your health, your relationships, your family and your spiritual development. You can include other areas that are relevant to you, such as where you live or your emotional situation.
Then write the key piece that your business plays in all this.
Maybe your business will give you freedom of time to exercise on a regular basis, which contributes to your health.
Or maybe your venture is a family project, it will help you be closer to the people you want.
On the other hand, it will allow you to develop professionally.
Keep in mind that the vision can change, it is not something fixed, so do not worry if you do not have all the details. You can add them later.
Imagine that there is a person living exactly what you described in the previous point. We will call her «Juana Ideal» (you can substitute Juana’s name for yours, or baptize her with one you like best).
If you have trouble thinking about the answers, look for information on the internet or talk to a real-life Joanna who is already experiencing your vision.
Take this example:
You want to live in a big city, have a decoration business, a stable family and marriage, feel healthy, full of energy and attend many social events.
You describe Juana Ideal as an outgoing girl, fun, open to meeting new people, has a habit of keeping in touch with friends and acquaintances and looking for ways to express her creativity.
When you get to the stable family and marriage part, you get stuck. Your parents are divorced and you really don’t know what attitudes or habits Juana needs.
You talk to your uncles who have been married for 30 years. One of the routines they have is to have coffee together in the morning and plan their day activities together.
Obviously, Juana Ideal makes this coffee with her partner a sacred ritual.
Another gray area is the health issue. In theory you know that you have to eat healthier and exercise. You have made some attempts, but you really don’t manage to be constant.
You call your friend who spends it in the gym. He tells you that one of his values is health, in fact it is his priority. He gets up early and exercises for an hour, before going to work, to prevent any unforeseen occurrence. Juana Ideal, does the same.
Continue to do the same for each point you have placed in the vision. Do not skimp, it is very important that you have this very clear.
If you had the thoughts, behaviors, attitudes, values and surroundings of Juana Ideal, you would also have your life.
Once you have everything written, all you need to do is start polishing yourself.
Quiet, it’s not for tomorrow. You have 6 months to get it so take a deep breath and move on to the next point.
Let’s review what you have so far:
Take a leaf and draw a line in the center.
On the left side, write down the habits, routines, thoughts, attitudes, knowledge, skills and environment that you have and that match those of Juana Ideal. On the right side write down what does not fit with it.
Choose a point that you have scored on the right side and highlight it with a phosphorescent marker.
Start with the easiest to implement or the most urgent.
Establish a breakthrough that you would like to have within the next 90 days and make a plan to get it.
eye! I didn’t say three, not five, not two – I said ONE point
I’m sure you’ve heard the song that says
«Step by step, soft soft, des-pa-ci-tooo.»
Changing one of these aspects will require all your effort, so you will do what the song says. You will advance little by little with your first element. Every time you get demotivated, check your vision and your great reason to continue moving forward.
At the end of the 90 days, check your progress. You can establish a new advance or if you achieved the change you were looking for, choose a second element and work on it for 90 days.
Repeat the reconnect exercise with your Great Why and establish a new vision every six months.
Little by little you will become the Joan of your dreams and you will have the business and life that you so long for.
You will have obstacles, I can guarantee that, but at this moment you must make an important decision.
You will not let anything stop you.
Think of your business as if it were a child. You are not going to abandon it just because one day it misbehaves and makes you crazy.
You have to give him love and learn to deal with him.
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