Entrepreneurship and Mental Health
Below are a few articles that look at the emerging research on the correlation between entrepreneurship and mental health challenges. They also offer suggestions on how to build and maintain your mental health.
Studies have shown a correlation between Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE’s) and careers in entrepreneurship. ACE’s Too High introduces the studies around ACE’s and how they can affect us in adulthood. This site also has a self-assessment that you can use to understand potential risk factors from ACE’s.
Resources for Support with Mental Health Difficulties
The National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI) is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. They provide advocacy, education, and support groups across the country. Their website can connect you with a local chapter and/or support group and has pages of helpful information about finding a therapist, telling others you are facing mental health challenges, or caring for friends and family with mental health challenges.
The Wellbeing North Star is a reflection activity that helps you analyze how your schedule or a particular situation affects you. It allows you to observe your situation from a balanced perspective and can help you make decisions about how you can alter your own behavior to achieve your goals. It is particularly useful in identifying sources of burnout and provides insight on how you can mitigate them.
Entrepreneurship requires incredible comfort with change and a high degree of adaptability. Whether an entrepreneur is receiving feedback from a user, a potential funder or encountering a new study about their target market, entrepreneurs have to balance their venture’s integrity with flexibility in an environment full of unknowns. Ask all assessment participants (the following assessment can be used individually or with your team) to individually answer the 4 questions below with one of the following 5 options. Modified from adrienne maree brown’s Emergent Strategy
Our organization/team is:
- Too adaptive (we change for anything and lose touch with our purpose)
- Highly adaptive and focused
- Pretty adaptive (we could keep relaxing with and into change)
- Struggling with adaption (we get really thrown off our focus/mission when change happens).
- Not adaptive (acknowledging reality is the first step).
- How do I/we respond to positive changes?
- How do I/we respond to negative changes?
- How stable is my/our purpose?
- How do I/we do at keeping my/our purpose present during changes?