Do entrepreneurs suffer from mental illness?

Researchers found that 49% of entrepreneurs surveyed were dealing with at least one mental illness (such as ADD, ADHD, bipolar disorder, addiction, depression or anxiety) and about a third of entrepreneurs struggle with 2 or more mental illnesses. Considering how much the game of entrepreneurship is idolized and associated with words such as “freedom” and “autonomy”, the emotional side of building companies is not so often spoken of. A more controversial and well-known view is that entrepreneurs report mental health problems significantly higher than professionals who work every day. According to a study by the University of California at Berkeley, 72% of entrepreneurs in this sample reported mental health problems.

Employers were significantly more likely to report a lifetime history of depression (30%), ADHD (29%), substance use conditions (12%), and bipolar diagnosis (11%). Starting a company from scratch can be risky, exhilarating and exhausting at times, all at the same time. The Hustle surveyed more than 300 entrepreneurs on the state of their mental health, and a whopping 63% reported dealing with burnout, and 59% said they had dealt with anxiety. Entrepreneurs have a higher than average rate of anxiety and depression.

Many are standing on a dangerous cliff. The expectations of entrepreneurs are extremely high. They're trying to live up to the most successful people on earth. Starting a business causes financial instability, tension in relationships and feelings of isolation.

The ruthless and demanding work schedule of an entrepreneur often leads to chronic stress, which soon turns into exhaustion. Not only is this important for one's well-being, but research has shown that stronger mental health increases business turnover and productivity. Similarly, 23% of entrepreneurs have family members who face these problems, compared to only 16% of others with family members who face these same types of problems. Entrepreneurs may have to spend months investing personal capital in their businesses without receiving benefits.

As a former businessman and professional investor, he has taken the business journey many times and has experienced burnout more than once. Entrepreneurs need to consider the costs of these options in their budget and actively participate in the request for help. And at the time, many of the people I knew within the business community were very obsessed with this story. Entrepreneurs have lower initial incomes, lower income growth, lower long-term incomes, higher work stress, and more psychosomatic health problems than employees.

A psychologist from John Hopkins published a book about how most entrepreneurs are so obsessed with their working lives that they become hypomaniacs. Being a founder isn't always glamorous, the pressure of running a business can affect your mental health. Chronic stress is not known to be a mental disorder, but it is a sign of poor mental health because it brings feelings of hopelessness, lack of direction and lack of importance to an entrepreneur. The University of California, San Francisco and its team investigated mental health problems among entrepreneurs.

Not only are they fun, but they are also a great reminder to entrepreneurs that they have a separate existence from their work.

Muriel Bivins
Muriel Bivins

Wannabe bacon lover. Freelance pop culture maven. Unapologetic twitter buff. Hardcore pop culture specialist. General pop culture trailblazer. Amateur introvert.

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