Entrepreneurs tackle unique hurdles that few other people ever face. Starting, organizing, and running your own business is a thrilling yet challenging experience. Even when you find success in your business endeavors, you can still face significant levels of stress, worry, or other negative emotions. Because of this, entrepreneurs often have a greater risk of developing certain mental health issues.
Everyone experiences mental health issues differently. Understanding how common challenges affect your demographic allows you to seek specialized help and obtain effective treatment from a Licensed Clinical Psychologist. Learn more about the common mental health issues in successful entrepreneurs with this overview.
Entrepreneurial Character Traits
Entrepreneurs tend to share certain personality traits that help them find success. If you’re going to run a successful business, you need a significant amount of energy and dedication. Managing a profitable business also requires creativity and motivation. These traits make you successful, but they can also make you more sensitive to certain emotional states. For example, creative people tend to experience stronger emotional states, which makes them more vulnerable to the negative emotions that can lead to depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues.
Certain personality traits—such as sensitivity or higher levels of self-criticism—can be risk factors for various Mental Health Disorders. Similarly, the frequent mood swings that can come with emotional sensitivity can contribute to mental health issues. While none of these traits are inherently negative, paying attention to how they lead to or worsen symptoms of mental health conditions is an essential part of seeking the mental health treatment you need.
Loneliness and Stress Are Risk Factors
Entrepreneurial personality traits aren’t the only risk factors that can come with being a successful business owner. Turning your business into a profitable endeavor is a life-changing experience that contains both high and low points. The challenges you face along the way can create stress and other symptoms that link to mental health issues.
Entrepreneurs work hard every day to make their business a success. The effort you put into your work can put strain on your relationships or other aspects of your social life. After all, very few people understand the unique challenges you overcome as an entrepreneur. While your hard work leads to success, it can also become lonely as you dedicate more and more of your time to your business.
Loneliness can create or worsen feelings of isolation, poor self-esteem, hopelessness, anxiety, or stress. Loneliness can also lead to filling your free time with unhealthy coping mechanisms such as drinking excessively or taking drugs.
Building and running your own business also comes with a lot of stress. Becoming an entrepreneur takes courage and dedication. You’re going to face roadblocks along the way. Even after you find success, the business world is full of challenges and uncertainties. Stress—especially severe or ongoing stress—can lead to Anxiety Disorders, Addiction Disorders, and other Mental Health Disorders.
Burnout Worsens the Issue
Burnout, insomnia, and other stressful experiences are common issues for professionals who overwork themselves without taking care of their physical, mental, and social health. Many of these issues overlap with symptoms of the common mental health issues that entrepreneurs face. For example, insomnia can be the result of a stressful time at work. It can also be a symptom of severe depression or anxiety.
It’s not always easy to recognize the line between your usual work experiences and symptoms of Mental Health Disorders. Without treatment, symptoms like stress, insomnia, and burnout can obscure the development of deeper mental health issues and worsen mental health symptoms. That’s why it’s important to work with a Skilled Psychologist who can identify the effects of mental health issues in your life and create effective treatment plans to help you heal.
Common Mental Health Issues for Entrepreneurs
Any individual can experience any type of Mental Health Disorders. However, there are some conditions that are more common among hard-working professionals and business owners. Below are some of the most common mental health issues for entrepreneurs.
Depression is characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, emptiness, or worthlessness. If you have depression, you might also experience a loss of interest in things that once pleased or motivated you. Loneliness, stress, and professional burnout can increase the risk of depression in entrepreneurs. These symptoms also increase your risk of experiencing suicidal thoughts associated with depression.
Many entrepreneurs experience extreme highs alongside extreme lows. Periods of high energy, innovation, and motivation go hand in hand with periods of extreme stress and unpredictability. These experiences overlap with the symptoms of Bipolar Disorder.
While the manic periods of Bipolar Disorder can seem productive, the lack of focus and concentration can lead to unfinished projects. Moreover, the depressive crash that follows can lead to extreme fatigue, listlessness, and feelings of worthlessness.
Entrepreneurs often hold themselves to extreme standards. Your success is a result of your skill and hard work. Feeling like you aren’t meeting those usual standards can create ongoing feelings of pressure, worry, and dread. Anxiety Disorders can stem from the severe and ongoing stress of running a business.
Entrepreneurs are also more likely to place their self-worth solely in the success of their business. This can lead to low self-esteem and confidence issues. Even though your business is successful, anxiety only lets you focus on the things you could be doing better. Stress, burnout, and other complications you might face as a business owner can create or worsen feelings of anxiety.
Chemical dependency is another common Mental Health Disorder among entrepreneurs. Individuals who turn to drugs or alcohol to cope with the stress of their professional lives might develop dependency on those substances. This in turn leads to substance abuse and Addiction Disorders. Though excessive drinking or drug use might feel better initially, the physical and mental health challenges of an Addiction Disorder only exacerbate the issue in the long run.
Though these disorders are common among entrepreneurs, effective treatment is available. Understanding the common mental health issues in successful entrepreneurs makes it easier to navigate your mental health challenges and find the professional help you need. Learning more about the mental health conditions you face is the first step to obtaining effective treatment from a Licensed Clinical Psychologist.
As a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in the Beverly Hills, Bel Air, Century City, Brentwood, Westwood, Irvine, Newport, and Orange County areas, Dr. Blair helps successful entrepreneurs heal from the unique Mental Health Disorders they face as professionals. Take the first step toward healing today when you work with the team at Blair Wellness Group.