Although the title of this piece is “Entrepreneurship and Your Mental Health,” it could just as easily be applied to artists and professional freelancers. Joshua Davidson has written an excellent piece on the importance of mental health for those of us who spend many hours working alone and/or making all the tough decisions unilaterally.
If you’re thinking of going off on your own or starting your own enterprise, the words “complacency” and “procrastination” have to be eliminated from your vocabulary. If self-motivation and a drive to succeed despite the inevitable hardships you will face are not part of your nomenclature, perhaps this is not the right road for you.
More specifically, as Davidson points out, you will undoubtedly face some sense of depression or loneliness along the way. As he puts it:
You see, the reason that I am writing this particular blog post is because some of the most talented, successful and driven entrepreneurs I have ever met are, most often, the most depressed.
They lack the feeling of fulfillment. They feel isolated. They’re stuck in a mental corner, so to speak.
From an outsider’s perspective, that might seem a bit crazy. How can someone who has created their own destiny, been accomplished and driven success, feel this way?
But it’s not all doom and gloom, nor is it all sunshine and rainbows. The grass, as they say, is always filled with more chlorophyll on the other side. Self-fulfillment and stability are not necessarily mutually exclusive, but more often than not they tend to be in the real world.
Ultimately, however, Davidson makes a good point in highlighting the importance of mental health, especially if you’re going it alone. As he puts it, there’s no shame in talking to someone, even a therapist, about the challenges you face professionally. After all, without a strong, sound mind, how effective/productive can you really be?