It was one of those rare British days where the sky is blue and everyone wants to be outside. Feeling motivated, I packed my water bottle and notebook, and headed to sit by the river and hope for inspiration. But inspiration wasn’t flowing freely…

Working on your own is challenging and can be very isolating. Continually trying to focus and motivate yourself is daunting. The other day I found myself with loads to do but just could not motivate myself do anything. I wrote this blog because, by speaking to other solopreneurs, I found we share the same worries and moments of blind panic. So I asked them what they do when they find themselves frozen, unable to do anything.

Motivation and inspiration comes in many shapes and sizes, and sometimes just talking through your challenges, fears and worries can unlock the way you’re feeling. ‘A problem shared is a problem halved’, right? If you’re feeling a bit ‘meh’ and wondering how to get back the buzz that enticed you into the world of entrepreneurialism, here’s what I learned from the conversations I had with my fellow solopreneurs when they were facing tough times:

  1. Change your environment. Being in nature can make such a difference in our focus. And, according to Chelsea Flower Show this week, there’s proof that being outdoors in nature has significant health benefits too!
  2. Treat yourself. Do something that makes you happy. This could be something as simple as taking a break, having a coffee, listening to music, going for a walk, hitting the gym, or reading a good book.
  3. Make a plan to meet other like-minded solopreneurs – weekly. The feeling of isolation as a solopreneur can creep up without you noticing. Make time to get out and speak to people!
  4. Get active and stay active. When we get our bodies moving, we release feel-good chemicals which increase our focus and motivation (and it’s an opportunity to daydream!).
  5. Create a list of three things you need to accomplish and reward yourself when you’ve completed them.
  6. Attend networking events. I try and attend one every two weeks. You never know who you’re going to meet – and meeting one new person can be game-changing.
  7. Solopreneurs are their own worst enemy because we want to achieve our goals and yet are frustrated when they don’t happen. Set goals that are actionable and achievable. Set yourself a deadline but break the tasks into bite-size pieces to make them more manageable.
  8. Recognise when you are at your best. I am a morning person so I give myself my biggest tasks first thing as that is when I will be the most productive.
  9. Surround yourself with others who share your motivation. They might not be as passionate as you are about your business, but spending time with positive and motivated people will eventually rub off on you.
  10. Have financial goals and set a budget. If you’re not achieving the financials goals you set yourself, ask whether they are realistic. At what point do you need to look at the budget and make changes?

There are hundreds of thousands of solopreneurs throughout the UK, and it should come as no surprise that they all struggle with motivation at some stage. Whilst being your own boss is fun (well, most of the time), it does come with challenges and we must be open to learning from others every step of the way. If you need help finding your motivation and focus, get in touch. Remember: ‘A problem is just a mountain you haven’t climbed yet.’