The Lonely Journey of Entrepreneurship & How to Combat It

Successful entrepreneurs are often seen to lead a comfortable and worry-free life. On social media, for example, rewarding entrepreneurs are framed with luxurious vehicles, lavish vacation, and flashy parties. While they might look happy in those pictures, do you realise that the success portrayed in the photograph and in reality is different? Through the visual images, you might be able to see the fruits of their struggle. While in reality, there are more to reveal.

“Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill

Often times, public persona of entrepreneurs does not reflect the dark reality of their entrepreneurial journey. When you look closely to their entrepreneurial life, you will be surprised by the ups and downs they have to encounter, especially during the early days of the business. As you know, being an entrepreneur is not a one night journey. There are stages of trials and errors that every aspiring entrepreneur has to face before achieving success. Without all the challenges, being an entrepreneur is almost impossible to attain.

What makes entrepreneurship a lonely journey, then?

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There are numerous reasons, here are the most common ones:

Reason #1 You will disconnect from social world, friends and even your family

As an early step, being an entrepreneur means you will not have much time for socialising. You will be busy focusing on and achieving your goals. Here, we talk about commitment. When you are committed in an entrepreneurial journey, you will 100 percent likely to be a loner. Room or garage is your office and most people are keeping distance with you unless those who really care. How?

For example, your friends invite you to a beach party, but you have tasks to be done that night – so, it is a no. Or, your friends text and say they will come over to your house, but your goal is closer and you say that you are busy – so, it is a no. Your family is also likely to receive no answer from you as you focus on your journey.

Reason #2 Only you understand your own struggle  

No one says that being your own boss offers an easy start. Unless you have what it takes to be an entrepreneur, you should adjust yourself to even beyond your limit. Why?

Because you will work way harder than anyone else. You will have to step out of your comfort zone and you will lose almost half of your own personal space. The worse is, no one will understand all your sacrifices but those who have been in the same position as you.

Reason #3 You will go broke before your business is stable

One of the most important things in building a startup is that you might have to sacrifice your savings during the first stage of business. This means that you will probably go broke for quite a long time before you can really make a living from your business. In fact, many entrepreneurs continue living a minimal life even after they start to turn a sizeable profit. They do this because their employees’ pay comes before their own. There is no guaranteed job security as well, so they always look for ways to expand their business.

So, while your friends are having a party, going to the cinema, buying a house, etc., your money is tied up in your business.

Reason #4 You will be criticised and involved in more conflicts  

Concluding all the reasons, no one understands your struggle, you leave all your friends behind, and your family does not understand you as well. Thus, it all will lead to more internal conflict with your friends and family. You will be heavily criticised as people will expect you to behave normally while all you want to do is sitting at the bath up at 3 am to calm your mind down, every night.

It seems that an entrepreneur is a scary journey. Loneliness is a sad feeling and it leads to more depression. So, for your own sake and sanity, it is important to mitigate loneliness as you embark on your entrepreneurial journey. Fortunately, there are two practical ways you can apply.

1. Reach out to other entrepreneurs

People at home might not understand your battle. Your friends won’t either. So, it is time to level up your circle and find people who can listen to you, understand your struggle, and advise you. With technology nowadays, you can find and connect to more entrepreneurs than you think. Join a live chat or group or entrepreneurs. You can also find a coach to help you with the journey. Remember, your goal is important but walking together with know-how individuals is better than walking alone.

2. Document your journey

You can start a YouTube channel, podcast, or just a video for yourself. It will be very helpful especially when you are feeling stressed with the journey. Turn on your camera and start talking. This kind of documentation will remind you of your past when you are a success. When you share it with people, you let others know that the entrepreneurial journey is not easy but it is not as lonely as they think it is. Remember that a journey is not a journey without memory, make it the best.

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