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Stressed Out

Stress is universal and does not discriminate.

If you think you're stressed out because you have to get up every morning to go to work, punch a time clock, and spend eight or ten hours performing tasks you don't enjoy doing, you're not alone. At some point in their lives, almost everyone will find themselves in the same situation, going to work to make a living.

But there is another side of the stress equation that, unless you've started your own business in the past, you may not think about. That is starting a business, making it operate effectively, and keeping it running profitably.

Think about all the entrepreneurs who have to generate their own incomes and don't have the luxury of knowing that they are going to get a paycheck at the end of the week. Sometimes it may take years before they actually start breaking even or start making a viable profit.

Although owning and operating a successful business is the dream of entrepreneurs around the world, it is not always as glamorous as one might think, especially if the business isn't meeting income expectations.

The income generated by a business is crucial for that business to survive. When monthly overhead expenses are due and if there is not enough income to pay them, a business owner can get seriously stressed out.

And there are other factors that may cause stress levels to rise. Managing employees is a big expense and a big concern. A business owner has to make sure that employees are covered by the right insurances, paid as contracted, taxed as dictated by local, state, and federal laws, and trained properly are just a few things that may cause anxiety.

The stress doesn't stay at the business location, it is taken home as well. If there isn't enough money to pay business expenses, household expenses will suffer, too. You may be forced to make a decision as to whether you are going to pay the monthly lease for the office space or pay your mortgage payment. If your business is your only source of income, you may not be able to pay one or either of them.

All told, stress is a hazard that goes along with owning a business. The way an entrepreneur handles the stress makes a big difference in the health and welfare of the business, and the health of entrepreneur.

In the world of business, it's easy to get mentally and physically burned out. Bankruptcy, foreclosure, alcoholism, drug abuse, spousal abuse, divorce, suicide, and strokes and heart attacks are all interwoven in the ups and downs related to the stresses that are brought on by challenges related to business ownership.

This is not to say that the stress related issues mentioned above don't happen to people who work regular jobs. It does, and it happens quite frequently. The phrase, "going postal," denotes how people go off the deep end while working on a regular job. It happens!

Stress is universal and it doesn't discriminate. It is found in all professions, all age groups, and in all segments of society. It is a part of human nature and no one is immune to it. The fact is that some people just handle it more effectively than others.

Stress brought on by the rigors of business ownership has its own unique challenges but it can be managed. As an entrepreneur, you have to learn how to recognize stress, admit to yourself that your are stressed out, and then seek ways to control it effectively. If not, stress will take control of your personal life and make it difficult for you to mange your business successfully.

Billions of dollars are spent annually on combating stress related physical and psychological issues.

John M. Roberts is the owner of John Roberts Realty located in Moreno Valley, California. You may contact him at jrobertsrealty@yahoo.com.


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