Over time, we seem to lose that initial drive we once felt to be successful entrepreneurs and business owners. At some point, money is just money and the role of “owner” or “founder” is nothing more than a title.
When this realization hits, some people find it difficult to stay motivated. What do you do? How do you stay challenged on a daily basis? The answers to these questions play a fundamental role in continued success.
Staying Motivated After Success
Many times, the business world is similar to a mountaintop. We spend years–maybe even decades–climbing to what we feel like is a summit, only to find out that the top isn’t quite as satisfying as we had thought it would be. We quickly realize that it’s more difficult to stay motivated once our primary career goals have been accomplished.
If you talk to any aspiring entrepreneur or business professional, most will tell you that their ultimate dream is owning a business and enjoying the freedom that comes along with it. However, for those who’ve reached this mountaintop, it becomes apparent that staying motivated to continually pursue success can command all of your energy.
The reality is that staying motivated is directly tied to feeling challenged. If you want to wake up each morning with a sense of urgency and a drive to succeed, then you need new challenges in front of you. Specifically, you may find the following suggestions helpful:
1. Teach Others
When you’ve had success in a certain profession or expertise, teaching comes natural. You clearly have a firm grasp on your niche and can leverage this knowledge to help others succeed.
This is exactly what successful stock trader Timothy Sykes did after he accomplished his goal of becoming a millionaire. Instead of sitting on his $4.2 million in trading profits, Sykes decided to challenge himself by turning his focus to teaching. His current goal is to create more millionaire students than any other stock trading teacher. It may seem like a subtle change to some, but it’s just the challenge Sykes needed to stay motivated.
2. Write a Book
Another challenge many successful business owners and entrepreneurs pursue is writing a book. This comes natural to many, but is a huge challenge, nonetheless. Authoring a book is unlike anything else and requires meticulous attention to detail and a long-term vision.
If writing a book sounds like too big of a challenge, try taking smaller steps. Find some industry publications and contribute regular articles or posts. Not only will you find this new task energizing, but it’ll also be rewarding for you and your business. The more you write, the more familiar people become with your name. Developing this thought leadership will benefit your business in the long run.
3. Narrow Your Expertise
A career in business often leads you down an interesting path. You start off with a broad scope, willing to take any job you can land. Then, over the course of a few years or decades, you spend time narrowing your focus and specializing your interests. Eventually this specialization leads you to a successful job and high-ranking position. However, after you become an executive or business owner, your focus, once again, becomes very broad. You’re suddenly tasked with overseeing a number of responsibilities and can’t focus on any one thing like you were once capable of.
One way to challenge yourself is to narrow your expertise and hone in on a specialty. By delegating other responsibilities to trusted employees, you can once again enjoy the ability to refine a particular set of skills. This focused approach can be invigorating for someone who has spent the past few years overseeing a long list of duties.
4. Set Lofty Goals
It’s possible that your current goals are simply too shallow. As a result, you feel very little challenge or motivation to accomplish them. The key to staying motivated may be as simple as setting better goals.
“Some people will tell you to only set obtainable goals,” writes John Hall, CEO and co-founder of Influence & Co. “But these are rarely challenging. Instead, shoot above obtainable. You’ll be surprised what you’re capable of.”
5. Mentor Younger Professionals
Much like teaching, mentoring younger professionals in your field is a worthy challenge. As a business owner, a decision to invest in younger employees within your organization can pay dividends when it becomes time to step away or retire. You’ll feel much better about leaving when you’re able to pass the business along to people you know and trust.
Never Stop Challenging Yourself
Staying motivated requires a commitment to being challenged. While it’s easy to become complacent as a business owner, you should avoid looking at your status as a relaxing mountaintop experience. Instead, find new ways to challenge yourself and become more successful.