We already do not discuss mental wellness, health, illness, wealth, unhealthiness, etc enough, but as we look into other areas that all of these things can affect, the conversation gets lesser and lesser.
At the age of 25, I found myself dealing with stress and depression. No one to talk to about it. And like most individuals, didn't feel comfortable talking about it because I didn't want anyone to look at me like I was crazy or talk about me. Eventually, I had to start seeing a therapist. It was beneficial in some ways. After having another breakdown and needing to see a therapist a second time and opt in to taking the medication...again of which there was little resolution, I found the best way for me to cope with what I was dealing with at the time was to immerse myself in whatever creative outlets I had available to me. At that time it was modeling, fashion shows, runway, etc. I spent time building a business around those creative outlets I loved. It continued from there and it helped me tremendously.
Although it helped a great deal, I was still mentally and emotionally unhealthy with no one to talk to. I was coping. Would I have liked to have someone to talk to? Of course. Someone who understood the way I thought about situations, not that they had to agree, but for the sake of someone just allowing me to speak without being told I didn't make sense or I sounded crazy...or someone trying to just tell me what I should do without fully understanding what was going on.
Here I am now at the age of 37, and I have realized how much it's needed for someone to discuss entrepreneurship and mental health. How important it is to have a therapist that can relate to you on many different levels. I'm not much into statistics, but we know well over half of small businesses fail within the first year. I always ask myself how many of those businesses that failed were effected by mental and/or emotional unhealthiness that the owner couldn't effectively manage?? We know that running a business is difficult period, but combined with mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical unhealthiness makes it a hell of a lot more difficult.
Time to address the elephant in the room. Yes entrepreneurs can suffer from mental and emotional unhealthiness/illness and we need resources. We need to stop acting as if the life of an entrepreneur is glamorous. Of course no one wants to share their REALLY dark moments on their journey, but understand it happens.
I'm grateful to have been chosen to go through what I have gone through to become a resource to those that feel like they don't have any. I'm grateful to be at a point where I am mentally and emotionally healthy, and have learned how to maintain that even on those days when life isn't so good.
We've got to talk about it. Period.