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Isolation and The Entrepreneur

According to Fast Company, isolation is a problem for 34% of entrepreneurs. As a psychologist, I suspect this number is actually higher, mainly because entrepreneurs who are feeling isolated probably don’t call it isolation. Instead, they may define it as stress, tension, anxiety, or even just “being in a funk.”

I attended a business mastermind a few weekends ago, and it was a powerful experience. Not just because of the high caliber of entrepreneurs present, but because many of them were describing similar challenges and frustrations, even though they differed in industry, experience, and education.

Relationship struggles emerged as one facet of their ongoing experience; mostly characterized by spouses who didn’t understand the hustle and grind of entrepreneurial life. The discussions were deep and rich, and meaningful- with everyone in attendance leaving with some good ideas and next steps for addressing the concerns in their life.

Coming home, I began to realize that the energy of this kind of mastermind is something that fuels me- I get energized and inspired when I make connections with other folks in business.

Yet, as an online business owner who works primarily virtually (by email and phone), I can see that my daily opportunities for connection and relationship are somewhat limited.

Obviously, the busier I get with client work, the less time I have to do other things; and then, when I have free time, the last thing I feel like doing is texting, or Facebooking, or messaging in order to stay in touch with my friends at a distance.

Yet, I can see that even spending time with my non-entrepreneurial friends doesn’t quite fulfill everything either. I love them and I love spending time with them, but there is a difference between explaining your business idea to someone who can understand the risks and dangers, compared to explaining it to your mother or a friend who can only say, “wow, that sounds great.”

The psychological literature points out that isolation has a number of negative consequences. People who are isolated (or who simply feel isolated; like they don’t belong) tend to:

    • Have poorer physical and mental health
    • Get sick more frequently
    • Stay sick longer
    • Feel less satisfied with life
    • Be more prone to depression
    • Have shorter life spans

Add to this the stress and uncertainty of entrepreneurship, combined with occasionally crazy hours, and friends and family who might not understand- and you create the perfect storm as far as lessened physical and emotional health.

Building your business is more fun when you do it with others who understand and support you.

If you are not part of a mastermind group, but have been looking for one to join, I’d like to invite you to explore whether my P3 Mastermind would be a good fit for you.

I’ve just opened up the application process and am carefully selecting just the right mix of committed and passionate entrepreneurs to join me for this six month program.

If you know that you could achieve so much more in the company of other entrepreneurs who get what you’re trying to do, and who want to support you to do it- please take a look and apply.

This is one powerful step to combating the isolation of entrepreneurship and putting yourself on track towards greater business success, as well as sustaining your good health. Learn more: P3 Mastermind