Beating the business owner blues

I have a job. I’m a business owner. But there are days when I feel unemployed.

From the outside, I look as though I have it all. I have been self-employed for the past 13 years, which has allowed me to stay home with our four children, do what I love to do for a living, work in my pajamas, set my own hours, call the shots, and answer “me” when someone calls looking for the president of my company.  I’ve been fortunate enough to make a good living, and I know that.woman stressed and frustrated

Yet there are times when I feel uneasy, the same kind of feeling I remember having when I was a new college graduate looking for a full-time job. You know, that lost feeling, trying to find a place where you belong? Even when I found that full-time job I was looking for, I never really found my place. Being the creative-minded person that I was (and still am!), I craved variety and new experiences. Most of all, I needed fulfillment, and I wanted to make my mark in this world. I didn’t see that happening working for someone else.

That’s why I became a business owner. And truthfully, I found what I was looking for, along with something I didn’t expect: the Business Owner Blues. There are days when I just feel down, maybe it’s about something in particular or maybe it’s about nothing in particular. I feel lost and alone, right back to where I started as a new college graduate.

I feel like … a business owner.

If you’re a business owner, you know what I mean. And if you’re a business owner and you don’t know what I mean, I’d like to meet you and see how you avoid this feeling! What I’ve found in talking with other business owners is that we all feel this way – some more than others – but we all feel this way.

I’ve found a few ways to cope that I thought I would share.

·        I talk to other business owners. I call one of them and say, “Hey, I’m having a bad day. Do you have a minute?” I explainwhat’s upsetting me, even if it’s nothing in particular. They listen and they get it. It helps to get it off my chest.

·        I consult experts. I went to school to be a writer, not a business owner. I don’t think I would have lasted this long in business without my business advisor and business coach. They are trained professionals and can guide me on the things I don’t know about.

·        I focus on the positive. I look at some projects that have made me proud, or simply sit for a second and count my blessings.

·        I take a break. “Step away from the business, Bridget!”  After all, I’m the boss – I can do what I want, right? Yeah, that’s what I used to think before actually becoming a business owner, but sometimes it’s true.

What do you do when you get the business owner blues?  Any words of wisdom you can share? I’d love to hear from you!

Bridget Ingebrigtsen

Bridget Ingebrigtsen owns Write On Command, a company that provides writing and editing services to businesses and not-for-profits. Bridget describes her six-year stint as Anchor Advisors' writer/editor as being "mutually beneficial" -- she helps Anchor Advisors keep their written projects on track and Anchor Advisors helps her keep her business on track. When she's not running her business, Bridget is running after her four children, two dogs and the latest in entertainment news. Connect with Bridget on Google+, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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