Take Care of Yourself. (No one else will.)

Karl R. LaPan, President & CEO, The NIIC

Starting or building a business can be an emotional roller coaster with some extreme high highs and some really low, lows. Entrepreneurial self-care is real and necessary. Often entrepreneurs experience higher rates of mental illness because they experience loneliness, hopelessness, fear, anxiety, burnout, and depression. All the weight of the business—its success and failure—lies on the back of the Founder.

The Founder must have positive outlets and resources to combat these feelings because nearly every entrepreneur has faced some crisis of confidence or moment of truth. In these instances, having a mentor, a peer support network, or access to assistance program resources can make all the difference in the world. Head trash can be emotionally damaging and draining. It may leave you spinning in decisions you need to make. It may lead to cutting off valuable relationships or result in addictive behaviors, like overworking, micromanaging, and adversely impacting non-business relationships putting self-care to the back seat. As one blogger reminds us, “Therapy is time spent every week strengthening your mind.” We all can benefit from this investment in self-care.

To do a quick sanity check, take this self-assessment, and identify two strategies you want to improve. Re-check your scoring every quarter. As you improve in your targeted strategies, add new ones to your list.


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