David Chislett en Entrepreneurs, Coaching, Creative and Media Professionals Chief Activator • The Writing Word 1/10/2016 · 1 min de lectura · +700

The Happily Grinning Entrepreneur (not)

I have always enjoyed working for myself and I am pretty sure that not much can compare to the joy and sense of achievement that comes with making your own business idea actually work. But entrepreneurship has undoubtedly also been the source of some of the most depressed and desperate moments in my life.

If you think about all the messaging you hear about entrepreneurship, it’s all about success, happiness, self-realisation. There is very little about the practical dangers, the loneliness the potential for depression. When you combine this with the fact that very often people starting new businesses spend a lot of time on their own and typically have money worries you have a recipe for depression.

I don’t think there is any direct, overt cultural incentive to do things this way. And yet, it’s definitely NOT how anyone talks openly about entrepreneurship. Like it is such a holy grail that to intimate that people might fail or burn out is sacrilege.

This amazing article http://www.inc.com/magazine/201309/jessica-bruder/psychological-price-of-entrepreneurship.html

by Jessica Bruder looks at The Psychological Price of entrepreneurship. I was of course drawn to it because of the Emotional Toolkit I am working on. But a part from that it’s an intriguing and important article. It looks at how the obvious psychological challenges are just ignored and not discussed and how a model of the shining, successful entrepreneur is almost enshrined in western popular business culture.

From my own experience, I know that I found it very hard to discuss my hard time with anyone. I knew that a lot of my problems were self-induced. They also felt intensely private, almost not a business problem but a personal failing.

The net result was that I deprived myself of emotional support and possibly some sound business advice by maintaining the happy, grinning entrepreneur façade while I lay awake at night trying to figure out how to solve these problems.

3 Steps To Take Today:

1) Just because you work alone, don’t be alone. Tell a trusted circle what you are going through and build a support network

2) Accept that not every entrepreneur succeeds wildly and experiences no bad times… even you. Especially you. We never hear about the famous failures, just the successes. That doesn’t mean they don’t happen.

3) Find the key thing that motivates. The thing that REALLY gets you out of bed in the morning. Try and keep that front and centre in your mind when the going gets tough. Don’t be alarmed if over time that changes. But you must have something.

I found the article I have linked to here incredibly uplifting. It was good to realise again that I am not alone in my struggles to stay afloat in the world we exist in. I hope it brings similar comfort to you if you are also a self-starting, dream-pursuing, self-employed person.

The Happily Grinning Entrepreneur (not)


Harvey Lloyd 1/10/2016 · #3

@David Chislett you touch on a topic that I find amazing. Entrepreneurship is glamorized as a magical skill, that once possessed, you live happily ever after. I have always seen the ultimate highs matched by equal lows.

One perspective I have maintained is the 80/20 rule. For every dollar you earn, twenty cents worth of trial and tribulation will be attached. Whether working for yourself or for someone else this holds true.

Small Business does require a level of entrepreneurship and so does working for someone else. If you earn, personally, north of 150k it comes with problems as well as successes.

Small business offers the opportunity for control of one's destiny. Even after thirty years of small business I am still fascinated that our firm has created a service that someone is willing to pay money to receive.

The battlefield of small business is a worthy endeavor. We don't just work on a piece of the enterprise but operate the whole thing.

We will fight somewhere to provide for ourselves and families, choosing small business was my choice of battlefield. Corporate America seemed way to intricate to maneuver through. Lows come with either of the choices, but small business offers the chance to rally the troops, customers and your entrepreneur self to meet the challenges. Corporate America, well....you hope your supervisor finds their entrepreneur spirit and does the same.

Your post rings true.

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David Chislett 1/10/2016 · #2

#1 My pleasure Dionne, thanks for engaging!

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Great article @David Chislett! I was having a conversation yesterday on exactly this topic. It's always a comfort to hear that we are not alone in some of the issues we face. Thank you for sharing 💯

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