Article by Tamara Esgoode
You’ve been putting in long hours in front of your computer, working hard to get your home business off the ground. Or perhaps you are in direct sales and have been on the telephone to promote your business. You are excited, passionate, and filled with anticipation. You bask in the glow of your home business vision, thrilled to be creating your dream. It’s an exciting time!
Then suddenly, one day, it hits you. Maybe it’s the third week, the third month or the third year of your business. You sit down at the computer, or pick up the telephone, and there is a crashing sound of silence in your brain. Everything looks different. It is as though someone dimmed the lights in your office. Your excitement about your business is a distant memory, and you feel terrible! You’re frustrated, anxious, depressed or even hopeless about your business.
Dear reader, you just caught yourself a case of the Home Business Blues! This little known malady quietly affects thousands of home business owners at all stages of business. Anyone from beginners to mature business owners can contract this nasty and persistent affliction.
The Home business Blues can sneak up upon you at any time. What are the symptoms?
- A sudden interest in “Desperate Housewives” which begins to look more appealing than your business.
- Frequent need for Kleenex when you total your sales.
- Watching “Dr. Zhivago” is more uplifting than reading your sales reports.
- Looking at your “to do” list inspires you to take a nap.
- You need double espresso and chocolate ice cream to jump start your day.
- You experience an overwhelming desire to toss your computer out the window.
The Home Business Blues can appear at any time. Perhaps your sales are slow, your computer crashed, one of your business partners quit, your direct sales company went out of business, or you just discovered you owe the government $3,000 of self employment tax. The Home Business Blues is a sneaky affliction and can even appear, unbidden, when things are going well.
New business owners are especially vulnerable to the Home Business Blues. It is highly contagious, and can be contracted even from non-business owners. Spouses can pass the Home business Blues along to a new business owner in the blink of an eye.
The Home Business Blues creates depression, irritability, misery, low productivity, and in some cases even causes unsuspecting home business owners to “throw in the towel” way before towel throwing is called for!
Thankfully, the home business blues is not a terminal condition. There are several proven strategies that can help lift you out of the dregs and move you forward to a more energized, productive, and Kleenex free business experience!
Surefire Cures for the Home Business Blues
- When you find yourself at the “Dr Zhivago” stage, get out of the office and take a walk. It is difficult to stay overwhelmed, discouraged, or hopeless when you’re moving about in the fresh air. If the weather is bad, take a walk on the exercise bike, or put on some music and dance. Get yourself moving!
- When sitting at the computer inspires you to visit the Yahoo personals instead of working your business, it is time to change the energy in your office. Open the windows, clear off your desk, change the desktop image on your computer, get a new mouse pad, and get rid of clutter. Remove everything that is not absolutely essential to your business. Make space for the new!
- Make yourself as comfortable as possible in your office. Get a really good chair that helps you to sit effortlessly. Get some plants and inspiring posters or paintings. These will help you to visualize positive results in your business. Create your office environment as a warm, uplifting and inviting space, and avoid fluorescent lighting which drains your energy.
- Seek the advice and support of your business colleagues. No home business owner is an island! You need to be connected with other successful home business people who understand the challenges you are going through. Find some business networking groups that you feel connected to, join them, and introduce yourself. Discuss what is going on in your business with a trusted colleague, coach or mentor. There is an old saying, “two heads are better than one” and this is especially true in the world of business. Brainstorm solutions to your business challenges, write them down, make a plan, and then be accountable! Some home business owners find a “business buddy” that they speak with daily for 15 minutes, to keep them motivated and inspired.
- Turn off the TV! OK, there is a time and a place for “Desperate Housewives”, but this is not going to help you to prosper. Instead, pull out your original business plan, which has the mission statement of your business. Read it! See and feel the vision and passion that originally motivated you to create your business. Spend some quiet time within your own heart and re-commit to your vision! If you have difficult doing this alone, set aside some time to do this with a colleague, coach or business partner.
- Don’t make ANY changes while you’re under the influence of the Home business Blues! Sometimes the blues are a sign that you need to make changes in your business, but other times, the blues are simply a normal part of the ups and downs that accompany any business.
By taking steps to combat the Home Business Blues, you will discover the secret treasure hidden within each bit of adversity that you go through in your business. Tomorrow, the sun will shine a little brighter and you will feel a renewed sense of excitement and optimism. Once your positive frame of mind has been restored, you can make decisions with a clear perspective.
The Home Business Blues can sneak up on you at any time. Following these suggestions can help you to persist through the rough periods long enough to realize your home business dreams!