How to Fall in Love With Your Business Again
It all started with so much passion. You were obsessed. "This is it," you thought. "This was always meant to be." So you made a commitment. You were all in. You felt more alive than ever.
But then, over time, things changed. Your passion waned. Now you're bored. Or tired. Or always irritable. "This isn't what I signed on for," you find yourself thinking.
As an entrepreneur, your relationship with your business can go through the same ups and downs as a romantic relationship.
From 16 years in business — an anniversary I celebrated February 2 — I can tell you that firsthand. There have been some hard times. Times I didn’t like my work. Times I wondered why I was even doing this. Sound familiar?
But I can also tell you that you are always just one shift away from rekindling your passion for your business. Here are a few ways to recapture the spark and fall in love all over again.
Take Some Things Off Your Plate
You started your business to do the work you do best and love most. There's just nothing like fully using your gifts and talents to make the impact you want to see in the world. It's one of the most fulfilling and invigorating things we experience as humans.
Over time, though, other things may have crowded the most important work out of your days. For example, maybe you're spending too much time on administrative tasks. When that happens, it's all too easy to get to a place where your business no longer brings out your highest and best self and your passion starts to wane.
If you're in this situation, take some time to reconnect with who you are and the work that really gets you excited. What do you want to accomplish? How do you want to spend your days? From there, you can start to paint the new picture of where you are headed.
Ultimately, the only work you should be doing in your business is the work that only you can do. Work toward delegating or outsourcing the rest. Start by getting the task that drains your energy the most off your plate. When you refocus on the work you were meant to do, your business will start feeling more effortless and joyful again.
Honor Your Experience, Passions, and Expertise
Another passion killer in business is doing work that just doesn’t excite you. This may be happening because you feel like you can’t turn down any opportunity for cash and you end up accepting projects that aren’t quite you. Or maybe you have new interests you’re longing to explore. Or perhaps the work you used to love has lost its appeal because you’ve grown and evolved and need new challenges.
Again, the solution is getting clear on who you are and making sure that your business, your brand and your being all align with that. Think about your experiences, your expertise and your passions. Do you get to tap into all of them in the projects you’re doing right now? Have any of those areas changed since you started your business? If so, has the work you’re doing kept up with your personal change and growth?
Narrow Your Focus
Rekindling your passion for your business doesn't just mean looking at the work you do. It also means thinking about the people you are doing that work for.
Success doesn't mean working to get every possible client to choose you. If that's your goal, your business and brand are going to feel generic. And you'll end up working with clients who aren't the right fit. It's not that they're bad people. They're just not your people. They don't understand your unique value. You don't intuitively get each other. And, when all is said and done, neither of you is going to be all that thrilled about your experience of working together.
A better strategy is to focus on a very niche audience, or maybe multiple audiences that have something in common. Who are the people who will best understand, need and appreciate the work you do? Why are you uniquely qualified to help these people? When you know the answers to those questions, you can make sure that everything about your brand helps call in your dream audience.
Know Your Value — and Charge for It
Finally, it's only natural to fall out of love with your business if it isn't taking care of you. Or, in other words, it's not providing for your financial needs.
This is something we entrepreneurs can feel uncomfortable talking about. But please be assured of something: There is no conflict between wanting your business to serve others and make the world better and wanting it to help you thrive financially.
You have to charge enough to keep your business running and pay your personal living expenses, of course. But, for your business to be sustainable over the long term, it also has to provide you enough income to make you feel that all your hard work is worth it. Remember, you have distinctive expertise and experiences that make you stand out from your competition. Does your pricing reflect your value? And do your website and other marketing channels convey that value to your audience?
If not, it's time to reimagine and refresh your brand. And we at DesignGood would love to help. Through our proven process, we help you identify your passions, your unique strengths and the audience you feel called to serve. And we make sure all of those things infuse your brand with memorable energy. To learn more, schedule a chat with me now.