I have a feeling that all the winter blues has had a lot people off their game, feeling sluggish and unmotivated. I also know that the emergence of spring like temperatures is a great incentive to find the motivation for getting out of that rut.
What I keep hearing in Discovery calls with new clients is all about
“I’ve come this far but now I am stuck”
“I’m working my tail off but I feel like I’m lost”
“I’m not really sure what to do next”
“I keep asking myself why it is that I think I can do this. I mean who am I to compete with everyone else out there offering the same kind of thing”
“What’s so different about me that makes me special enough form someone to spend their money with me?”
And that is just in the past week! So I really thought about how often I hear those kinds of statements and worse, how often the entrepreneurs I hear it from tend to feel isolated. Sadly, most of the entrepreneurs I work with don’t have someone to bounce things off of and personalize the solutions.
Of course it is understandable. It is our own little voices that start that whole cycle. We begin by questioning when we miss a goal or even when we start struggling to meet it. We question ourselves, our process, our skills, and our value. As soon as that happens, our ever lurking procrastination leaps in and convinces us we should hold off on whatever next step we thought we should take. After all, we are suddenly not convinced we know what we are doing. A fear of failure, looking foolish or not credible in our role becomes a real danger in our minds and further entrenches the negativity bias that our brains are wired to turn to in default. Now we are examining every possibility and re-examining every risk with the addition of our fear often the point of paralysis.
The other culprit to this feast or famine cycle is often and unsmoothed or inconsistent plan. We begin in a state of excitement that keeps us motivated to work hard, but even when we experience successes, we have often let our foot off the gas to some extent. When the plan is working we tend to feel it is safe to conserve energy, which means we may not be as vigilant as we might have been in the beginning. The challenge with this mechanism is that it requires an a lot more energy just to get us back up to speed let alone to gain the additional momentum to continue the growth.
In many cases I see a combination of both for some of my clients. Our own thoughts and beliefs influence our actions. The self-awareness and self-control of it is challenging even for the most aware person. Planning is as much a part of the solution as managing the self is in business success. Without grit and a good plan, success is a much longer cycle of feast or famine.