What do you do when you’ve had a crap day?
If you work from home, it’s easy not see any one for several days. Especially if you work with clients by email or phone.
There is no coffee room talk or quick catch-ups by the photocopying machine that you used to have in PAYE world. And sometimes it can feel just darn lonely being your own boss.
So what happens to your motivation when you have a bad day?
We all get them, don’t we? A client who cancels a meeting at the last minute. 5 rejections on your follow up phone calls, one after another. A laptop that decides to stop working when you have a proposal that needs doing.
If you are lucky enough to have a supportive partner or a good friend who understands what it is you are trying to achieve, then it makes it easier. But many of you don’t. There may even be people around you who don’t really believe that you will succeed in your plans and possibly don’t even want you to, for what ever reason.
This is why it is good to have a couple of simple strategies up your sleeve that will allow you to pick yourself after a bad day and get back on the straight and narrow. Here are some of my favourites:
Know when to stop. One bad thing seems to attract another and when you are feeling this way, it is far better to move away from what you are doing. Stop forcing yourself to follow up those phone calls, for example, when you are beginning to believe that you are only going to get “no’s”. Because that is exactly what you will get at that time.
Take a break. Go out for a walk, tweet away on Twitter, do some household chores, go out and buy a newspaper – it doesn’t really matter what it is a long as you are able to distance yourself from the stuff that doesn’t seem to be going your way.
Have a business buddy. A friend may not understand what you are going through if you phone up for a moan (and can quite often encourage you to moan even more if they are being sympathetic to your needs!) Having one or two business buddies – people you feel you can be honest with and yet can encourage each other to move forward with projects and ideas – can be a lifesaver on a bad day. Having someone who understands but keeps you on track with a little kick on your behind!
Play your favourite tune. Cheesey I know, but playing your favourite upbeat music and having a little dance around the office can do wonders for a mind shift. No one is watching after all!
Make a daily list of achievements. A great habit to get in to is to write down the 3 things you have been most proud of each day in a journal, diary or on your PC. It could be as amazing as winning a huge contract or as small as making a call to someone you have been putting off for weeks. Whenever you feel like the business is against you, read through your lists and realise how much you have achieved already.
Remember not every day is going to be a great day. There will be days that clients cancel, work goes wrong. You can’t control other people’s (and technology!) actions. But the one thing you can control is the way you deal with those actions when they happen.
What do you do to get over your crap days?