Burnout And Anxiety: The Dark Side Of Entrepreneurship And How Founders Overcome Them

Source | INC42

Entrepreneurs deal with stress and anxiety on a daily basis, perhaps more than a normal person. Unfortunately, not everyone is able to dodge and fight all the challenges thrown their way. While talent and ideas may help build a great business, it is one’s self-control and habits that help sustain it. It thus becomes important to hone the skills necessary to help one move forward.

Keeping that in mind, here are four tactics that entrepreneurs can employ to help them manage stress and anxiety better.

Accept It

The first step towards solving a problem is to understand that there is a problem. The same goes for anxiety. One needs to understand that it can be debilitating – if not handled well – and one can never ever get rid of it completely. It is part and parcel of running a business, but in no way, it is a sign of failure.

For the first few months and even years till the company is on a steady profit making footing, the entrepreneur may experience deep anxiety on almost every aspect – staffing, market share, finances, operations, etc. Even the boldest and resilient entrepreneurial souls may face bone-shattering stress, but its existence should not deter them from pursuing their goals.

One way to understand this is through a comic book hero analogy. The existence of Kryptonite doesn’t deter Superman from saving the city although he has been brought to his knees on various occasions because of it. He has understood that although it is detrimental, it is avoidable. He either stays away from it or wears a lead suit that can weaken its effect.

Use It To Your Advantage

Accepting that stress & anxiety exist in one life and it is unavoidable is only half the battle won. There are additional steps that need to be taken to manage it well. Because if left unchecked, it can be debilitating in both personal and professional life. It, thus, requires careful thinking and planning.

One proven way is to change one lens and view anxiety as something that motivates one into taking an action. Here you are intentionally trying to transform your weakness into a strength.

So, the next time you are hit with anxiety, instead of panicking and letting it overpower you, simply ask yourself: “What is the one thing I should do right now to let go of this discomfort?”

You will be surprised to see how this small tweaking of the mindset can help you be more productive and get more done.

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