The path of entrepreneurship doesn’t have to be a lonely one! Here’s how you can stay connected with the world while building your dream business.
Starting your own business is a project that will take over most of your life. You are straying away from the typical 9-5 jobs that your friends and family may have. The sheer effort you have to make to get a business up and running will leave you feeling lonely.
While it might seem almost expected to feel lonely during your startup journey, loneliness is a slippery slope to several health conditions. It increases the risk of mood disorders, depression and anxiety. It can also adversely affect physical health, leading to cardiovascular diseases, like high blood pressure and strokes. But don’t worry, we are here to help! Here are five ways to deal with loneliness as an entrepreneur:
Change your surroundings
When you start out, you’ll probably be filling many roles in your company by yourself. It means you wouldn’t necessarily need a designated office building for your business. But just because you don’t have any employees yet doesn’t mean you should work from your living room alone. Try to go out and work from a café or get a membership for a co-working space. It can help you draw a clear boundary between your home life and your work and, in turn, help curb the loneliness associated with overworking.
Find like-minded people
One of the reasons why you might feel so lonely on your startup journey is that those around you don’t understand what it’s like to start their own business. So, you need to make concerted efforts to find those going through the same things. Look for entrepreneurial meetups or startup events in your area. These meetings will be a great place to get advice and help you build a supportive network for yourself and your business.
Take regular breaks
Being your own boss means that you don’t have someone towering over you and giving you instructions. It also means that no one is telling you when to clock in and—more importantly—clock out of work. Personal time can thus quickly blend into work, making you give up quality time with friends and family just to get a little more done.
However, investing in your relationships with others and yourself is as crucial as devoting time and effort to your company. Try to have clear work hours, set deadlines for yourself and create a work schedule to have a healthy work-life balance.
Make time to work out
The best way to maintain physical and mental health is by working out. Exercising helps reduce stress hormones (such as adrenaline and cortisol) levels in the human body. It also leads to the release of endorphins—the happy hormones—which can elevate your mood.
On the physical health spectrum, working out can help your cardiovascular system work more effectively, reduce your risk of health conditions (like stroke, diabetes and high blood pressure) and promote better sleep.
Suffice it to say, you need to find some time to hit the gym or get some other form of regular exercise. Going to the gym or joining group activities, like running clubs, will also be a great way to meet more people and maintain a social life while getting your startup idea off the ground.
Enjoy the ride
As we said right at the outset, loneliness is part and parcel of the startup process. While it is essential to acknowledge it and take steps to feel less lonely, focusing on the positives (like the number of orders you are getting or the raving reviews your products are receiving) will help you push past loneliness. As long as your startup idea is something you are truly passionate about, the sheer happiness you get from pursuing it will help you overcome bouts of loneliness with ease.
Our final tip for you is to reach out to people around you whenever you feel lonely. Talk about your successes and failures to your friends and family. You can even ask them to keep you accountable to your schedule to help ensure that you are taking regular breaks. If loneliness is becoming a significant problem in your day-to-day life, you can consider seeking professional help and therapy to cope with the mental pressures of entrepreneurship. If you follow the tips we shared above and make efforts to connect with those around you, the path to entrepreneurial success will get easier as time goes by.
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