At first most people's motivation is the same – pay the bills and make your business profitable.
But even with the most basic of needs, sometimes, you can still lack the motivation needed to get through the latest Dip.
My solution to this for a long time has been a variation of the “dream board.”
Only mine doesn't ONLY include “dreams” (like something I want to buy or a trip I'd like to take) – it includes “reasons” as well (like my children and my husband.)
My dream board
A decade ago my board consisted of pictures of cleaning services, a floor plan of a 2500 square foot house I hoped to one day own (at the time, the mere thought of a house that big – and brand new – seemed insane at best) and pictures of places I wanted to visit (far away lands like Southern Florida when I lived in Central Florida LOL) – along with pictures of my children.
One day all those “dreams” were realized and down came the board.
An unintentional consequence of passive income… If the money comes in regardless of whether or not you “work” it can become easy to stop pushing yourself.
A year ago I re-created my dream board, essentially making it one out of my entire office. I added new wants. I added new reasons. I added new inspiration. And I deleted from my efforts anything I was working on that didn't have an ROI that made it worth it… to me.
All around my office, you'll find Scarface. Now, I'm not saying I support murder and drug dealing LOL. I'm saying I identify with his sense of entrepreneurship and his sense of getting what he wanted. And my favorite quote of all time was a line by Tony Montana: “Who do I trust? Me.” However, I hope to not be gunned down at the end of my SEO career. ;-) Above my desk are other quotes by “more respectable folks” that inspire me and mottoes I try to live by. Among them?
“Admit your errors before someone else exaggerates them.” ~ Andrew V. Mason
“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.” ~ Jim Rohn
“It isn't what they say about you, it's what they whisper.” ~ Errol Flynn
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” ~ Albert Einstein
“We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid.” ~ Benjamin Franklin
“Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.” ~ Dwight Eisenhower
“Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” ~ Winston Churchill
“Being rich is having money; being wealthy is having time.” ~ Margaret Bonnano
“Before doing something ask yourself, ‘Will it increase my bank account, increase my happiness or improve the world?' If the answer is no, don't fucking do it.” ~ Me
Also present? Pictures of my new “wants.” The house my husband and I are currently building, the picture of the 244 Sunesta I'd like to buy once I'm completely settled in here, and several bookmarked photos of spectacular backyard patios and kitchens that I am looking to for inspiration to design the one I plan to add to our new house (complete with my logo actually built as a mosaic into the patio.) [Yes. Seriously.]
My office also contains numerous pictures of my children, husband, close family and good friends. A printout of a letter from a chick who thanked me for having “helped four children more than you'll ever know” by helping her create a successful business working from home. A letter from one of my employees telling me how much he has loved his tenure working with me (he still does) and the opportunities he's been able to explore as a result. A print out of my fundraising efforts for the Stroke Walk that reminds me though this online “fame” may be bullshit, it allows me to help so many folks both monetarily and awareness wise. Those are my reasons.
What's on (or should be on) your dream board?
I no longer look at a dream board as a task to be completed, but more of a rolling motivation. I'll add new quotes, I'll add pictures of my new son (due soon!), I'll add pictures of the bar I'd like to open when I retire when I get a better idea of what I want it to be.
Do you use a “dream board” of any type? What's on it? What should be on it? What motivates you?
[Gasp. Comments are open below!]