How to Get Unstuck from a Rut

The Roller Coaster Ride of Being in Business

As fall fair season ramps up here in south central Pennsylvania, I can’t help but reflect on the parallels between being in business as a solopreneur and the thrills of amusement park rides and carnival games of chance. Starting your own businessRoller Coaster is exciting and invigorating. You meet twists and turns, and you often don’t know what’s around the corner waiting for you. It’s a rush!

But after a while, some of that adrenaline naturally subsides as you settle into the business of doing business. That doesn’t mean you no longer have passion for what you do; it means you’ve become more secure, confident and have a better handle on what to expect. Oddly, that positive sign of professional development can make you feel like stagnant and stalled.

Hitting “Refresh” To Regain Your Small Biz Mojo – Getting Out of the Rut

Recently, Carol Roth featured a post by Shanna Mallon that offers some great tips for giving the humdrum the heave ho and breathing new life into your entrepreneurial attitude.

My additions to the list:

  • Get out and learn something new in the name of professional development – There are all sorts of free and low-cost seminars and informative sessions out there that you can attend to stimulate your brain and broaden your knowledge. Check out programs at local chambers of commerce, SCORE chapters near you, public libraries, etc.
  • Experiment – Do you focus on a tight niche? Consider taking on a project that you’re confident you can ace, but that is outside of your normal realm of work. For example, a writer who specializes in blogs for business consultants might consider doing a feature article for a travel and tourism publication. Use your transferable skills to add some spice to your workload.

What about you? If you’ve found yourself in a rut, what have you done to beat the monotony and find the fascination again?

by Dawn Mentzer

Image courtesy of foto76 /

Thrill Ride: Adrenaline Rush of Being a Solopreneur

Earlier this week, I experienced a blast from the past. This video on Facebook is particularly nostalgic for me because I’ve always lived less than a two-hour drive from Hershey, PA (a.k.a. The Sweetest Place on Earth). Being “Hersheypark Happy” as a kid was all about the euphoria that came from riding the loop of the Super Dooper Looper roller coaster and losing your lunch on the Rotor (Sadly, both the lunch AND the Rotor are no longer with us).

Although more tame, being a solopreneur has its thrills, too, doesn’t it? And it should! What’s the point of being in business if you’re not getting a rush of adrenaline every now and then from what you do?

I get mine when…

  • a new prospective client calls me.
  • a new prospective client emails me.
  • a new prospective client contacts me via social media.
  • a long-time prospect does one of the above to move forward on a project.
  • one of my blog posts really resonates with my audience.
  • I start a new project.
  • I get an ongoing project.
  • a client expresses delight over my work.
  • a client becomes a repeat client.
  • I connect – really connect – with other professionals whom I’ve met via social media and in person.
  • I prepare a proposal.
  • I prepare an invoice.
  • I receive a payment.
  • I get the opportunity to meet new prospects face to face.
  • I get the opportunity to talk with other solopreneurs to share challenges and best practices.
  • I keep in mind how fortunate I am to have such an amazingly flexible schedule and the support of family, friends, clients and colleagues.

Yeah, definitely not the dips, turns and upside down adventure that is the Super Dooper Looper, but these are the simple things that get me up and motivated every morning.

Now you! What about being in business for yourself gives you a thrill? Please share what gives you your entrepreneurial adrenaline rush!