If you’re an entrepreneur, you’ve probably either said or thought something along the lines of: “I have trouble turning my brain off.”
Even when you aren’t physically at work, you’re likely being pulled into work discussions or decisions after hours (or before hours!) or thinking about plans or decisions that are upcoming. Entrepreneurship certainly isn’t easy —and it can take its toll on your sleep, your relationships, and your health.
While a certain degree of “healthy paranoia” can be good for entrepreneurs—as it challenges you to always think two steps ahead—it can very often become all consuming. The heavy weight of feeling like the only person responsible for the success or failure of the business, or the pressure of every single decision that gets made can very quickly be alienating. The line between “healthy paranoia” and “analysis paralysis” is laser thin.
73% of small and medium sized business owners say that they are lonely running their business. Typically, entrepreneurs are builders—and take immense pride in what they’re building. Their “free time” is spent tinkering, even if it’s just in thought. As a result, they train their brains to constantly analyze threats and opportunities. There is no such thing as “turning your brain off”—and often these thoughts and fears and ideas are internalized, or at least not shared outwardly until they’re fully baked ideas.
As an entrepreneur, you’re probably great at what you do, and believe wholeheartedly in what you’re building. But at the end of the day, you can’t build it all on your own, or be everything to everyone. Entrepreneurs, no matter what stage of business ownership they’re at, need to surround themselves with great people who can share the load when it’s too much, lift them up when they need it, and share expertise and experiences.
In the early days, maybe this is a friend or former colleague, or even a mentor who has worked with entrepreneurs in the past and understands the pain points and the very loneliness you’re looking to curb. Later down the road, you will begin to build an advisory network of like-minded people who really understand your business and your goals, and who are invested in helping you achieve them. Business ownership can be a lonely journey—but sharing the load and seeking out support from day one is important to building a solid foundation.
While you may never completely achieve the “turning my brain off” status—because let’s be honest, your business will always be your baby—surrounding yourself with a team of all stars who are genuinely committed to helping you achieve success will help your business thrive—and will allow you to be a healthier and stronger entrepreneur in the long run.