“The harder I work, the better off I will be.”
It’s the lie we entrepreneurs have convinced ourselves to be true after glamorising the “hustle” and “grind” culture of working for ourselves.
As entrepreneurs, we need to learn how to work more effectively and efficiently while doing what we want to be doing. Working harder at something that you get no enjoyment from will not bring you closer to your goals.
Starting with the question, “What do I want?” is the key to finding fulfilment in the work that you’re doing as an entrepreneur.
If you’re an entrepreneur feeling fatigued, unhappy and stuck at a low level of success, James Patrick says it’s all the result of three things:
Many entrepreneurs are in ‘reaction mode,’ working hard at something they’re not passionate about. If you don’t know what you want, then that’s where you end up.
If you currently feel trapped or stuck in your business, you’re not alone. According to James, 67% of Americans report being unhappy with the work that they are doing. This number seems to be reflected across the population of the world as well.
So how do we break out of this rut of feeling uninspired by the work we’re doing as entrepreneurs?
On the It’s More Than Money podcast, James Patrick talked through the ways we can reinvigorate ourselves and motivate our behaviour.
First, pay attention to your language. Instead of saying “I have to do this”, say “I get to do this.” James says this is one of the quickest ways to rewire your brain to look at your work as an opportunity rather than an obligation.
Secondly, take a look at your thinking. James gives an example of how we’re always trying to move forward and set goals for ourselves, but we’re often looking for the next goal to ensure our happiness instead of defining what would make us truly happy or fulfilled in that moment.
Third, you have to be intentional with your time and energy.
James shares a very powerful technique to put into perspective how much time you’re investing into your business versus what that time is bringing into (or taking out of) your life. Take the total amount of money you made last year and divide that by the total amount of hours you worked.
If the final number makes you a little sick to your stomach, you’re probably overworking yourself and not seeing the benefit of the work you’re doing. Lucky for you, James has a strategy for overcoming this as well.
Identify which days of the week are your best performance days and plan your work schedule around that. For example, if you know that you’re at the top of your game Monday through Wednesday, plan your work on those days with time blocks. Alternatively, you can set parameters for when you’re working and when you’re not. The key to success in both of these approaches is consistency; you have to stick to the plan no matter what.
If you’re feeling particularly exhausted or burnt out, take the time to rest and recharge. James recommends scheduling time out for yourself for activities that are not work-related as a way to recover or fill your emotional cup.
At the end of the day, every entrepreneur should be doing work that lights them up and keeps them enthusiastic. But to do this, the entrepreneur has to take a deep look inside themself and ask, “What do I want?”.
For more on deciphering your wants from your needs with James Patrick, take a listen to this highly-requested episode of the It’s More Than Money podcast.
Disclaimer: The information in this article is general in nature and does not take into account your personal circumstances, financial needs or objectives. Before acting on any of the information you should consider the appropriateness of the relevant product having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs. In particular, you should seek independent financial advice and read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement or other offer document prior to acting on any financial product or implementing any financial strategy.
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