Why Bother Starting Your Own Business? Get Clear on Your Motivation Before Taking the Leap

You’re a passionate person. You love what you do. You may have an itch to run a business, or the itch may only be telling you to leave the job you have because it doesn’t interest you any more. After illuminating your true passions, you could easily find a job working in an industry/business to support that passion. You could do what you love without the emotional and financial risks and potential headaches of running your own business.

Why Bother Starting Your Own Business? Get Clear on Your Motivation Before Taking the Leap

Business owners must keep showing up everyday, sick or not, tired or not, irritated or not, and commit to learning more, trying new things to keep the business running. Setting up your own business, especially with employees, requires commitment, focus, attention, and constant motivation to keep learning and innovating.

So, what’s the point of opening your own store/launching your own practice/selling your own goods? Why bother taking on all of the risk and making the commitment?

Below is a short list of motivations, some of which only skim the surface of the true core motivation. In order to keep showing up day in and day out, you need to know your core motivation. It could be to:

contribute to the world in a specific way;

have control over results from sharing ideas;

reap all the rewards;

have a flexible schedule;

be your own boss;

make more money;

stay at home with the family;

feel emotionally healthier.

How do you find out what actually motivates you? As a three-year old child ceaselessly asks “Why? So What?” this exercise uses the same questions to get to the core of what really motivates you. Take a few minutes and write down what you want and then answer the question, “So What?” until you get to the core motivation. Here’s an example of what it looks like:

Example:

“I want to make enough money so I don’t have to work anymore.” So what?

“So I can leave the emotionally draining workplace I’m at now.” So what?

“So I can spend some time with my children when they are awake, not briefly seeing them before bedtime.” So what?

“Because taking care of and having a supportive relationship with my children is the most important thing in the world for me.”

While the initial motivation was making money, the deeper motivation is the relationships with children. This deeper motivation will impact many priorities and decisions about the business such as opening hours, when employees may call you, et cetera.

Take your deepest motivations and keep them written in front of you as you build your business. They will keep you going when things don’t go your way and remind you about the reasons to celebrate really big when they do.