Why Small Business Owners Feel a Different Type of Stress….Especially During Economic Downturns

SecureABC > Business Strategy > Why Small Business Owners Feel a Different Type of Stress….Especially During Economic Downturns

Stress—we all experience different levels of it. Some more than others. 

As entrepreneurs and small business owners, we have the benefit of feeling our own type of stress.

Not that it is more or less than anyone else, but different factors can play into our levels of anxiety and pressure. 

Sure, we’re our own boss, what’s stressful about that? 

The drive to succeed can put ourselves in “work mode” 12 plus hours a day, 365 days a year. For me, Sunday night is when I hit the “work mode” switch (and my family can feel it).   

Turning it off rarely happens. We go to bed thinking about what was left undone at the office, or what needs to be on top of the list tomorrow. 

I often tell clients, colleagues, and friends, “I’m always available, call my mobile. I only turn it on silent when I turn out the light to sleep at night.” 

Fortunately, I have prioritized 7-8 hours of sleep as a “value add” to my business, more importantly to my family and health.   

So, what is it that causes this unique stress to the small business owner? 

Currently, it’s COVID-19 related pressures. A Forbes article, by, Nicole Lienbach-Reyhle, lists common reasons for this stress. These are; lack of control, reacting too soon, too fast, not enough time to do it all, and accepting failure.   

Thinking about the last 20 years, I can check all of these boxes. More than once. Currently, the lack of control is really obvious, at least to me. 

Recently, I had an opportunity to spend some quality time with my brother who is in the aviation insurance business. I listened to him talk about how stressed out he was (but he didn’t have to say it, I could see it). He seemed exhausted, as he took call after call from his small business clients around the country. Their businesses shut down, and a difficult future ahead.   

Joel is a great listener; a caring person and his customers were leaning on him to just listen. 

Times are tough out there folks. It starts with listening and talking. Back to the ABCs. 

Joel flew UH60s (Blackhawks) for the U.S. Army for 13 years. Lessons learned from that career are now being applied to this one. Take care of your people, listen, support, focus on the mission, and keep it simple. But also take care of yourselves, your family, and your neighbors. 

This is where we are at. The American small business owner, the entrepreneurs that have built and rebuilt this country since its founding, will come through again. It starts with A, B then C. Let’s Go. 


– Ryan Heining, Founding Partner

Follow us on LinkedIn and never miss a post!