Shawnee Love • August 24, 2019
Employee mental health has increasingly been a focus in the workplace, but what hasn’t been top of mind is the mental health of the entrepreneurs who employ them.
A recent report published by the Canadian Mental Health Association reported that 62% of entrepreneurs report feeling depressed at least once a week and 46% report that mental health issues impact their ability to work.
Those are astounding numbers! However, I am not surprised because entrepreneurs face tremendous challenges and pressures. Regrettably, they often feel they can’t discuss a mental health concern in case it is perceived as a weakness by peers, employees, family members, competitors and even possibly customers. Additionally, who has time to worry about mental health when you are running a growing business? You are too busy chasing new business, coming up with new ideas, fighting fires, fending off competitors, leading and managing, etc.
Because entrepreneurs have an abundance of stressful things going on, it is particularly important they know how to prevent stress from overwhelming them.
Entrepreneurs can practice preventative maintenance on their mental health by ensuring they are constantly working on their resiliency. For example, you can:
- Meet with your mental health professional- you take your car in at least twice a year, so why not see your therapist for a tune up at least as often?
- Take care of your physical self- eat right, sleep enough, and exercise.
- Give your mind a break- watch a funny show, take breaks, and/or participate in an activity such as meditation, tai chi, journaling, etc.
- Mentor- research shows that people who give back without expecting anything in return have greater mental health.
- Stay connected- this doesn’t mean connecting to your computer or phone but rather to your friends and family. Talk with them and share your burdens.
- Leverage your benefits program- get a massage, go for acupuncture, or visit your chiropractor or naturopath to ensure you are doing all you can to support your health.
- Take time off- leave early or arrive late or take the day off to do something fun. Enjoy the perks of being the boss.
No one is immune to mental health challenges. It’s important to get help when you need it and work continuously on building your resilience.
We’d love to hear from you on how you build your resiliency!