If you want to build a successful business or emerge a successful entrepreneur, you need to first build habits of successful entrepreneurs.
However, building habits isn’t as easy as when we think about it – execution is usually difficult.
You say “I’m going to…” start exercising, start eating healthier, be more disciplined, read more books, start that business, etc., yet, you lose drive after a few days, or weeks and go back to your old habits.
You have to realise that your habits might be the only thing in the way of getting you from where you are now to where you want to be.
Because it is specifically what you do that makes you who you are – that takes you wherever you deserve to be. A great reason you have to build the right habits.
So, this article is not about what habits entrepreneurs should adopt, but how to build those habits and make them stick.
1. Start Small
A lot of budding entrepreneurs trying to start their business often fall into the trap of trying to start with so much drive that they tend to become entitled to get what they expect because of that much drive they invested.
It simply isn’t how it’s meant to be. Because what happens is that when expected results aren’t coming forth, they become discouraged and stop chasing.
To build any habit, try starting small and make that little a habit before you begin stretching yourself.
Understand that you cannot magically change at the snap of your fingers. Change is gradual – respect the process.
Read Also: How to Start A Business in 6 Simple Steps
2. Try 30 Days
You obviously must have seen a lot of “30-day challenges” online. And they are not as ineffective as you might think it is.
Yes, they might not be as effective for everyone based on some factors we won’t be covering here, but they sure help in strengthening a habit.
The beauty of a 30-day challenge is that a routine quickly forms to a point where you stop thinking much about execution – the process just becomes automatic, according to psychology.
A great experiment to explain this is the T-maze experiment. The basis behind the experiment is to place a rat at the base of a ‘T’ shaped maze.
And in that maze, a reward – cheese – is placed at either the top-right or top-left, however, the placing of the cheese must be consistent for the outcome of the experiment to be predictable.
The rat is then released and expected to find its way to the cheese.
The first few times, the rat spends a while trying to figure out where the cheese is. But after a while, the process becomes automatic as the rat goes exactly to that spot where it usually finds the cheese in a flash – even when the cheese is no longer there.
Consistency is really important – that’s just how you build habits that stick.
3. Get Your Cue
Most times, we aren’t really lazy, but we just don’t know our triggers – what drives us to just take action.
So, we go through life feeling like we aren’t as driven or as hardworking – but, the answer lies in finding the answer to what drives you.
I used to experience network issues in my current location and this affected my drive to work on my websites.
I knew I was very hardworking. But I couldn’t place why I was not as enthusiastic about work as I typically am.
Thought about it for a while and did some soul searching and found out that investing in a Wi-Fi was the best solution to keep me connected to the internet and give me a reason to sit in front of my laptop.
Since then, my waking hours and sleeping hours have been on the internet.
PS: I’m writing this sick but I can’t just stop working.
4. Reward Yourself
Another great way to build the habits of successful entrepreneurs.
In the book ‘The Power of Habit,’ by Charles Duhigg, he talked about the ‘cue – routine – reward’ loop. The reason people stick to a particular routine/habit is the reward part of that loop.
And finding a way to reward a particular behaviour would be a great feat.
Jerry Seinfeld is a great example in explaining this point as clearly as possible. And his story is really important because he didn’t have to spend a lot of money on rewarding himself.
He wanted to be a better comic, but, realized that to be one, he had to be consistent and write a new joke every day.
Each time he wrote a joke, he put a big ‘X’ on his calendar. Day after day he kept writing jokes until he was so addicted to that big ‘X’ he did not want to break the chain.
Go find your big ‘X’ and keep working.
5. Eliminate Distractions
Just by living here on earth, and around humans, we are prone to various forms of distractions from different sides.
And the greatest good you can do for yourself in trying to form habits of successful entrepreneurs is to reduce those distractions as best as you can.
Turn off that notification on your mobile which is typically a cue I talked about earlier. Because what happens is that you gradually begin to associate that ping to that smile you get from seeing that meme on Twitter and that distraction.
Your list of distractions is endless – and it varies for a lot of people.
However, I want you to spend the next few days or weeks in being present in the moment. Take notes of your distractions and find a way around it or simply shut them out completely.
One trap you want to avoid when trying to adopt habits of successful entrepreneurs is to have your mind fixed on the long term that you fail to be present in the moment.
Shift your attention from that distraction. Stick to committing to the little things that go by each day and make adjustments as you dim fit.
Ask yourself “why?” Over and over again and also ask how you can become better at that habit; and one day, you will be grateful you did.