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A Brand New Day

Create a successful day from the start by taking these steps to get motivated.

Do you ever lie in bed and contemplate your upcoming workday? You think, "I'm going to call that new customer after I have my first cup of coffee." Then you decide the call can wait, and you hit the snooze button a few more times. We all want to be more productive and achieve success. But at times, we find it difficult to motivate ourselves to take action--especially first thing in the morning.

Some people view motivation as something of a conundrum--they don't understand how people can always be energized. Getting started has less to do with whether you have the energy and more to do with your desire and willingness to accomplish any given task.

As an entrepreneur, you are passionate about your business. Once you dig in, start a project and see the results of your labor, you become even more galvanized. Stop delaying your success, and begin your day with enthusiasm by taking action.

1. Start your day the night before. At the close of your business day, congratulate yourself on what you have accomplished. Do not judge the size of your accomplishments; appreciate that you have moved your business forward. Feeling good about what you completed during your workday sets a positive foundation for your next day. Say to yourself, "I love my business and will create even greater success tomorrow."

2. Create an outcome-oriented task list for the next day. Goals provide focus for your workday and clarify what you are going to achieve. State the payoff associated with completing each task--recognizing the outcome of your hard work increases your motivation. After defining your goals, choose which task to work on first. E-mail your list to yourself, or put it on your desk. Then relax because you have now created a great head start on your next business day.

3. Take time to invest in yourself before the start of your business day. As an entrepreneur, you are your business's greatest asset. You must take care of yourself. Choose a morning activity you enjoy so you can appreciate the beginning of each day. Whether it's a morning walk around your neighborhood, a quick breathing exercise or an intense physical workout, decide on something that helps you transition into your workday. Change your morning activity on a weekly basis to avoid getting bored with the same routine.

4. Visualize your achievement. Review your action list and concentrate on the outcomes you stated. Imagine the success you will achieve with each completed task. For example, envision your customers becoming happier and/or healthier after using your product or service. It may even spark some marketing ideas. Setting your brain on positive mode allows you to stay enthusiastic throughout the day.

No single day makes or breaks your business. Plateaus are a natural part of life and of growing a business. If a bad day occurs, don't despair. Become energized by your freedom to be your own boss and your ability to make changes. Your goal is to continually learn and realize that having your own business is more play than work.


Speaker and consultant Romanus Wolter, aka "The Kick Start Guy," is the author of Kick Start Your Dream Business.

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This article was originally published in the March 2005 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: A Brand New Day.

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