There are always ups and downs in life. Of course. And if you run your own business, you probably suffer a fuckload more of them than everyone else.
So you know when you’ve had a shit day — when your client didn’t like your first draft, another pitch was rejected, somebody asked for a refund? When you feel like crawling into a hole, ordering pizza, skipping your workout, and watching a marathon of House of Cards while ignoring everything else in the world?
Yeah, you know what I’m talking about.
You’d rather pretend the rest of the world doesn’t exist than stand the fuck up and do what needs doing.
Why do we do this? Fuck knows. We’re stupid. Because crawling into a hole and ignoring everything is the one thing you can do to pretty much guarantee you’re going to feel even shittier.
So what should we do instead? It’s simple (though not easy): what you know you should do. And I don’t mean should in an, ‘Oh, I really should read that book,’ or ‘Man, I really should implement that fashionable new biz technique everyone else is raving about.’
No, I’m not talking about all that crap that really doesn’t matter whether you do it or not.
I’m talking about the things that YOU have decided you should do. You know, things like:
- Getting dressed first thing in the morning, instead of lazing around in your dressing gown for three hours reading your latest guilty pleasure on your Kindle while drinking approximately five cups of tea.
- Writing your latest blog post before diving into your inbox.
- Going to the gym on your lunch break.
- Prepping (and EATING — can’t forget that part) healthy meals.
- Pitching a prospective client.
- Planning out the pages of copy you’re going to rewrite on your site.
Things that actually matter. To you.
And I’m not even kidding about the getting dressed thing. That was me. Up until a couple of months ago, when I decided the simplest, easiest change I could make to help me get a better start on my days was to actually put some fucking clothes on in the morning.
So if you wake up feeling like shit, wanting to stay under the covers with your tablet and the latest Game of Thrones ep, just get the fuck out of bed and put your damn clothes on.
If you get a crappy email and end up feeling like shit, don’t switch your laptop off and resign yourself to a day of unproductivity. Just do the next thing on your to-do list.
If you find yourself procrastinating and end up feeling like shit, force yourself to refocus and just do the tiniest first step of the next thing you were planning to do.
Because there is absolutely no getting around the fact that doing the thing you KNOW you should do is the only thing that will make you feel better.
Will make you feel good about yourself again.
Will make you feel EXCITED about what your business and life have in store for you.
And will make you want to do it all over again the next day.
Want in on a little secret? I have had one of those days today. I actually started off pretty good. It’s my first day back to work after a few hazy days on painkillers, mostly spent alternating between reading short, easy books (I’m still not sure if they were crap and forgettable, or if I was being crap and forgettable) and dozing.
So I spent my morning blissfully heavy-duty-painkiller free, answering emails, responding to my students’ queries in our Facebook group, chatting with fellow biz owners, and generally catching up on things. I was also plotting the blog post I would write for this week. And I kept putting it off, and putting it off, because I hadn’t written anything for a whole week, and oh what did I have to write about anyway?
And then I just sucked it up and started writing.
And now I feel good again.