For the self-employed, there are many challenges. One of the most significant is motivation, something which many self-employed people struggle with. While being your own boss is great, self-motivation does not come naturally to the average person. The following five tips can, however, help out a lot. See if they will work for you.
1. Follow a regular schedule. Motivation is to a large extent a matter of habit. Just because you can work whenever you feel like it, doesn't mean you should. Waiting for inspiration is a recipe for getting very little done. It's better to work the same hours every day, week after week. A more haphazard approach might be attractive, but will really only make it harder to be self-disciplined and productive. While it's okay to deviate from the routine occasionally, don't do it very often. It's also better to take occasional breaks and stop at a reasonable time since too long hours will lead to stress and overwork.
2. Don't work in your living space. Working in the same areas where you eat, sleep, and relax might seem like a good idea, but in fact, it is foolish. The problem is that you are already accustomed to doing other activities in these places. Trying to be self-disciplined and work hard in them will prove almost impossible. Instead, consider going out to a coffee shop, a public library, or some other similar location to get your work done. If you do choose to work at home, select one room as your 'office', and keep this area reserved exclusively for work.
3. Focus on what you want to achieve.Presumably, you're working on your own for a reason. You had a dream of working for yourself -- or at least some reason to become self-employed. If your motivation is flagging, reminding yourself of why you chose to work this way can provide a powerful boost. Focusing on your long-term goals will provide meaning to the daily grind, making motivation come easier. After all, it's ultimately the big picture, rather than daily concerns, that keeps people going.
4. Avoid digital distractions. Without the chance of your boss looking over your shoulder, the possibility of spending all day on the internet can be tempting. Social media can be particularly distracting. One good strategy is to turn alerts off on your phone or computer. A more aggressive strategy is to download productivity software that will actually prevent you from visiting time-waster websites during normal work hours. Putting away your phone and computer entirely (if you can accomplish anything without them) is another good method.
5. Just get started. Sometimes the secret to motivation is simply to begin working, even if you don't feel especially inspired. Gritting your teeth and buckling down may be difficult, but it is oftentimes necessary. Fortunately, work oftentimes has its own sort of internal momentum: the more you accomplish, the more motivated you will be to keep on trucking forward. This means that taking that first step can be the biggest key to unlocking greater motivation.
You're probably glad that self-employment is a possibility for you. If so, you really don't want to ruin such an amazing opportunity by being inefficient and unproductive. Keeping your motivation high is critical to success as a self-employed person, so see if the tips described in this article can help you out.