Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Managing Your Attitude When Business Declines

It’s not easy being a business owner. You experience a lot of pluses – personal freedom, flexible schedules, independent decision-making, and financial success when the wins come. What happens though when your business endeavors start to suffer? The risks have the rewards and the losses too, right? The biggest problem when business begins to decline is managing your outlook and keeping up your morale. As the owner of the business you have to keep a close watch on your attitude about challenges. If your attitude sinks it won’t help your business to increase. Negative attracts negative and positive attracts positive. Problem is when the negative is causing a major drain in your resources and finances you may find it challenging to keep a smile on your face.

Having worked on dozens of self-help and business books over the years, I’ve learned a lot about “attitude management”. My own business has faced several challenges this year. Some of those problems were unexpected and others just fallout from certain industry problems – and all of which has caused some personal evaluation on my part. I want to share some of the things I’ve been applying to my business to turn it around. If you’re experiencing any challenges, maybe this information will help you.

Monitoring your self-talk – it’s a big one how we talk to ourselves. I’m sure you’ve heard the expression “if I talked to you the way I talk to myself you would hate me.” True. What are you saying even to yourself? The brain cannot tell the difference between what’s true or false. All it hears is what we feed it. What are you feeding your brain? Positive affirmations and “go-get-it-done” thoughts? Or … are you saying negative stuff like you’re stupid … you can’t do it … Listen closely to what you’re saying inwardly. You would be surprised to realize that your own words affect your attitude, and people perceive your attitude. No one wants to work with someone who has a bad attitude even if it’s not be said aloud, it’s being perceived.

Outflow gets inflow – expecting things to change through inertia is an oxymoron. Change happens through action and movement not through standing still. You want a change in your business then what are you going to do about it? Marketing and outreach! This article is one of my outreach activities. I try to do 5 things a day to promote my business. I post on social media. I blog. I try and contact prospects just to touch base and follow up.  The more outreach you do the more likely it is that prospects will come to you – and often not directly from where you expect. Outflow of information alone will draw in more to you. So, tough times require you to move forward and not curl up and give up.

Center yourself and meditate or do some kind of relaxation exercise. I meditate every morning to center myself to take on a new day. Some of the greatest leaders meditated. Use meditation to clear your mind. Find a mantra. My personal favorite: I make money easily and frequently I am grateful for everything I have.

Practice an attitude of gratitude. I know in your bleakest moments you might wonder, what am I grateful for? Look around you – that is what I do. I live in a beautiful home and I’m surrounded by my own artwork and others’ works too. I have my birds that chirp in the background. I have two great kids and a wonderful life partner whom I adore. What could I not be grateful for? Even in the darkest moments, an attitude of gratitude will make you feel much better.

Be willing to do what it takes … but within reason. I’ve started driving Uber to supplement my income. I may drive for weeks or months, but I’m going to do what it takes to make money. Now my only caveat here is: be smart about it. I recently got hired to write furniture descriptions. After hours of going to meetings and numerous rewrites to meet their standards, I walked away with $165, which was less than minimum wage. When I drive Uber I can make up to $50-$70 an hour. Do the math and don’t be desperate – some jobs don’t pay the bills and make no sense.

Michelle Gamble, an award-winning author, owns 3L Publishing (www.3LPublishing.com). She provides strategic content for eBooks, documentations, online publications and information services, whitepapers, and more. She is also a seasoned editor and marketing specialist. For information, email info@3LPublishing.com.

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