Entrepreneur Tips: How to Stay Motivated

Entrepreneurs are fueled by high octane ambition, but sometimes the entrepreneur fuel tank can get low. To realize their vision, they need to keep-up their ambition. We have provided tips for entrepreneurs, including how to bootstrap, manage risk and a guide to startup funding, but here are several tips to help entrepreneur’s re-fuel to keep charging full steam ahead:

Be Mentally Positive — When you feel ambitious, it’s as if you can take on the world; it’s like a positive high. You are mentally awake and ready to take on the world. One of the first steps of keeping motivated is to have a positive outlook. Take a look at Steve Jobs’ keynote speeches. He is constantly in awe of what he and his team at Apple have accomplished. The following video comically takes a look at his positive language:

Identify Bright Spots — Now that we understand ambition is partly rooted in positive thinking, identify those times you were in a positive mood. Was it getting out of the house? Was it trying something new? Was it spitballing with a friend or colleague? Was it taking some time for yourself? Whatever gets you in a positive mood can be a catalyst for motivation.

What is Your Prize? — Entrepreneurs are often faced by incremental failures that can be discouraging. These discouraging moments feel like signals saying it is not going to work. Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, was laughed at when he tried to convince college students Facebook was the next big thing. Why would I want to talk to my friends online when I can just walk down the hall, they mocked. Yet, Zuckerberg’s idea turned out to be a hell of a gold egg. His vision of what Facebook could be likely kept him on track.

Get Inspired — Tales of entrepreneurs that have made it work and all of the challenges they were forced to overcome can be inspiring. Think about what Steve Jobs must have gone through when Apple’s board gave him the boot. Imagine being deposed and then making an incredible return, which overshadowed his previous successes. You are not the first or last entrepreneur to overcome seemingly insurmountable challenges. To help you through them, reading the success stories, such as Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki or The Secret by Rhonda Byrne, can be fuel to give you an extra boost.

Remind Yourself of Your Success — It took you two months of hard work to get published in the Wall Street Journal. Or, you have already developed a prototype of your product and sparked the interest of several investors. When focusing so much on the present and future goals, it’s easy to loose sight of our prior accomplishments. Reminding yourself of how far you’ve come can help you reboot and push forward.

Image by bruno neves from Stock.Xchng

Famous Football Quotes from NFL Greats

With the upcoming 2011 football season approaching, we have picked our top 10 quotes from football greats that are inspirational to entrepreneurs and business leaders.

1. “It does not matter how many times you get knocked down, but how many times you get up.”
– Vince Lombardi

2. “Always remember: Goliath was a 40 point favorite over David.”
– Shug Jordan

3. “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog.”
– Archie Griffin

4. “You’re never guaranteed about next year. People ask what you think of next season, you have to seize the opportunities when they’re in front of you.”
– Brett Favre

5. “The road to Easy Street goes through the sewer.”
– John Madden

6. “Pro football is like nuclear warfare. There are no winners, only survivors.”
– Frank Gifford

7. “Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.”
– Lou Holtz

8. “It’s not the will to win that matters – everyone has that. It’s the will to prepare to win that matters.”
– Paul “Bear” Bryant

9. “Build up your weaknesses until they become your strong points.”
– Knute Rockne

10. “Football is an honest game. It’s true to life. It’s a game about sharing. Football is a team game. So is life.”
– Joe Namath

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Health & Wellness in the Food & Beverage Industry

John Oliver, the British comedian, during his Terrifying Times tour detailed at what point the Chinese will become a threat to the United States. It didn’t have to do with GDP, debt or urban development. The point at which the US seeds its #1 status to China is when a grill that can float in a pool sells like hot cakes. In other words, the US will lose when the Chinese buy dumber crap.

John Oliver’s point strikes a deeper, systemic issue of unfettered consumerism that has taken a hold of the US culture. But the tide is turning and Oliver’s vision could be realized sooner rather than later. US consumers are seeking products that waste less and brands are responding in kind with innovative packaging and wellness ideas that cuts the fat.

Almost one thrid of the waste generated in the U.S. is from packaging and much of that waste is plastics, which take 1000 years to decompose. To get a measure and extent of US consumerism, consumers toss out enough paper & plastic cups, forks and spoons every year to circle the equator 300 times. These are just some of the few effects excessive consumerism has on the environment. Eco-packing’s mission is not to stop consumerism per se, but to make it less damaging to the environment, which takes innovative and creative thinking to accomplish.

Entrepreneurs are pushing the green envelope to develop new ways of sourcing food in eco-friendly ways and delivering them from point a to point b. Boxsal, for instance, makes sustainable picnic containers from Sustainable Forest Initiative-grade recycled paper and prints with eco-friendly links. Each Boxsal can be used around 10 times or so. And the German beverage company, LemonAid, uses its drinks to create a sustainable system. The pure-organic drink sources its ingredients from local farmers and a large portion of the proceeds are used to support small, local projects in impoverished countries.

While Boxsal and Upboxes has an indirect impact on consumer wellness (in that a good environment contributes to a healthier life), there are several beverage companies that are innovating to improve consumer wellness. Upboxes use boxes similar to Boxsal to deliver sustainable food, such as free-range chickens, with a rotating, ethnic menu. Back to the Roots offers urbanites a way to grow mushrooms using coffee grounds.

The objective of Boxsal, Upboxes, and LemonAid is to create a system that supports the longevity of individuals, local farmers, communities, culture and the environment. Their packaging, sourcing and menus lend themselves to this over-arching mission. It is about purposeful consumption that flies in the face of John Oliver’s floating grill; one that speaks to being conscious of not just the product, but what went into it.