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Stress Management in Business Ownership


According to a recent article by Harvard Business Review, entrepreneurs may be especially vulnerable to stress due to their passionate feelings, social isolation, and willingness to take on high economic risk. On the other hand, a report by shows that both salaried employees and entrepreneurs are equally likely to experience burnout. In other words, there are no inherent qualities associated with entrepreneurship that prevent the pursuit of healthy, balanced, and stress-free careers. To improve their own mental and physical health and achieve sustainable excellence on and off the job, entrepreneurs can engage in several stress management strategies. Many of these strategies involve the delegation of certain tasks to other professionals. Contracts and other legal matters can be incredibly stressful for entrepreneurs, so working alongside a trusted New York business litigation firm to address legal issues helps limit business-related stress. Call (518) 591-4664 in Albany, (315) 422-1333 in the Syracuse area, or (914 )304-4353 in White Plains and throughout the Hudson Valley to discuss potential legal strategies with an experienced business attorney with Schwab & Gasparini today. 

What Are the Top Stressors in Business Ownership?

Although entrepreneurs face various stressful situations, some stressors are more common than others. A few of the most commonly cited sources of entrepreneurial stress include:

Entrepreneurs Often Stress About Exit Strategies

A 2022 article published in the Harvard Business Review (HBR) states that entrepreneurs may be particularly stressed about potential exit strategies. In the context of entrepreneurship, an exit strategy typically involves selling the business. For most entrepreneurs, the goal is to build a business from the ground up before selling, reinvesting the resulting profits, and planning for retirement. 

Many Entrepreneurs Struggle With Feelings of Isolation

By their very nature, entrepreneurs forge their own paths. These independent characteristics are quite rare, and entrepreneurs often struggle with feelings of isolation. While entrepreneurs have many positive personality traits, they may find it challenging to connect with others due to their rarity in society. These individuals often exhibit conflicting natures, such as strong leadership qualities and a reluctance to ask for help. Entrepreneurs should remember there is nothing wrong with asking for help, especially from a business litigation law firm in New York, such as Schwab & Gasparini.

Entrepreneurs May Experience Work/Life Balance Issues

While many businesses prove profitable, the initial stages of entrepreneurship can be challenging and time-consuming. While researching and planning potential new businesses, many entrepreneurs earn nothing from their ventures. After quitting their jobs to focus on their new business, they cannot fall back on the safety net of a salary––and they may feel pressured to achieve success as quickly as possible. As a result, they may spend most of their waking hours developing their business, sacrificing their work/life balance in the process. The time-consuming nature of entrepreneurship often continues after the business has been established, and there is at least some truth to the workaholic stereotype associated with entrepreneurs. 

Entrepreneurs Must Deal With High-Risk Situations

For many entrepreneurs, the main stressor is the risk associated with starting a business. Some entrepreneurs risk everything to realize their dreams, even if it means maxing out their credit cards or selling their assets. This financial risk has the potential to cause serious mental health issues for entrepreneurs, including high anxiety and sleep deprivation. For many people, the prospect of taking on so much risk dissuades them from ever attempting to start their own businesses. Working with an experienced business attorney at Schwab & Gasparini can help you evaluate your business contracts to minimize the risks they pose and manage your commercial liabilities to stay ahead of potentially expensive situations. 

Common Strategies for Stress Management in Business

Several potential strategies may assist with stress management in business. While no single solution is suitable for every entrepreneur, a few of the most widely applicable options include:

Prioritize Positive Health Choices Throughout the Entire Organization

Whether entrepreneurs are managing solo operations or employing hundreds of people, they should strive to prioritize positive health choices throughout the entire organization. Leading by example helps entrepreneurs deal with stress while ensuring a positive work atmosphere. Stress can easily transfer between workers and entrepreneurs can improve their own mental health by addressing concerns in their workforce. Examples of positive health choices include:

  • Provide adequate breaks
  • Encourage or subsidize gym memberships
  • Monthly office yoga sessions
  • Enable remote working
  • Encourage social gatherings
  • Provide onsite or remote counseling services
  • Recognize employees for positive achievements

Pursue Healthy Sleeping Habits

Sometimes, the simplest strategies are the most effective when it comes to stress management in business. Entrepreneurs who get enough sleep can expect lower levels of stress and a range of other potential benefits. According to the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, adequate sleep is linked with the following:

  • Better immune systems
  • Lower risk for heart disease
  • Reduced stress
  • Better mood
  • Clearer thinking 
  • Better career achievements
  • More effective social interactions

Maintain Social Networks

While entrepreneurs tend to self-isolate as they build or operate their businesses, it is important to maintain existing social networks. Even a relatively brief meeting with friends can have notable mental health benefits. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that social connection is associated with several benefits, including:

  • Less stress
  • Lower levels of depression
  • Less anxiety
  • A sense of well-being
  • Improved sleep quality

Consider Counseling 

Entrepreneurs who are experiencing severe stress levels should consider counseling. Numerous counseling organizations in New York offer services that may benefit entrepreneurs. Speaking with someone else about business-related stress can sometimes make a difference by mitigating the sense of isolation. Trained mental health professionals may also have more targeted and effective suggestions for stress management strategies. 

Set Realistic Goals

Entrepreneurs often feel motivated to set high goals, but remaining realistic could be beneficial in the context of mental health. Entrepreneurs may feel a sense of shame or frustration if they fail to meet unrealistic goals, but defining and working toward realistic goals can provide a continuing sense of achievement and pride. 

Delegate Tasks

While some entrepreneurs naturally delegate tasks, others may struggle to ask for help. Micro-management can lead to stress for the entire organization, and this tendency is often associated with entrepreneurs who are perfectionists. Stepping back and allowing others to assist can provide entrepreneurs with more free time and less pressure. 

Get in Touch With a Business Litigation Attorney Today

Delegating legal tasks is just one of many strategies for effective stress management in business. Legal issues have the potential to cause considerable headaches for entrepreneurs and the businesses they have developed, but entrepreneurs and other business owners can approach business litigation alongside experienced New York business attorneys. Choose Schwab & Gasparini and call (518) 591-4664 in Albany, (315) 422-1333 in Syracuse, or (914) 304-4353 in White Plains and throughout the Hudson Valley to book a consultation today. 


Fri Sep 15 2023, 12:00am