Couple Entrepreneurs – Part II (Stress)

Building a company from scratch and running it is not a romantic exercise. It is, in fact, a very stressful exercise. It does not take much of an effort to slip in to the stereotyped entrepreneur’s lifestyle. Work-work-work… It is fun-fun-fun to begin with, but soon there are indifferent vendors, careless accountants, not-so-dependable infrastructure and demanding customers. And there would be lots of stress-stress-stress… If you are doing a start-up in India and are serious about it, the likelihood of a quick exit is very small. Which means, you are in it for a decently long time to come.

And when it is a couple as the partners in the business, the effect is not doubled, but quadrupled or even goes exponential. There is no going back home at the end of the day and relaxing. You might end up going to bed discussing an unhappy customer.

This stress can take a toll on a lot of things, most importantly your health – physical and mental.

So, what is the way out? Like most good questions, this one also does not have any one very good answer. The first thing is to recognize that this can happen. And even if as a devoted entrepreneur you want to give it all you have, take a step back. Because its a long race that you have to survive and win. It helps if at least one of the partners can get cool about things. It might also help to just drop the work over a weekend, switch off the phone and go away somewhere. Sometimes, addressing the stress can lead you to realize that you are trying to do some of the things which you should rather drop. They may be bringing more stress than money! Focusing can help the business as well as the entrepreneur’s personal life.

If nothing else works, you might also have to take a decision of letting one partner go (from the business, of course) to maintain sanity. Although this is not the solution one should immediately jump to, but it need not be a strict no-no either.

Are you a ‘couple entrepreneur’ or know someone who is? Do you have any suggestions for warding off the 24/7 stress it can generate? Leave your comments.

This entry was posted in Business & Entrepreneurship by Jaya. Bookmark the permalink.

About Jaya

Jaya Jha is an entrepreneur, a techie, a writer and a poet. She was born and brought up in various towns of Bihar and Jharkhand. A graduate of IIT Kanpur and IIM Lucknow, she realized early on that the corporate world was not her cup of tea. In 2008, she started, one of the first print-on-demand publishing platform in India. She currently lives in Bangalore and divides her time between writing and working on her company's latest product InstaScribe ( with a vision to make it the best e-book creation tool. Blog: Twitter: @jayajha Facebook:

5 thoughts on “Couple Entrepreneurs – Part II (Stress)

  1. I am single & even dont know any couple entrepreneur. But to ward off ur stress, may be i can suggest something.
    Every sunday morning u both go to any temple in ur town & spend 10-20
    min in peace at that holy place.
    I dont know how it works, but it works. Spiritualism is a good way to ward off ur stress. I visit shirdisaibaba temple every sunday in my hometown dhanbad & i feel so peaceful there…

  2. firstly, i commend you guys for what you are doing.. i dont think i have the enterpreneur gene in me (however i do know a bunch of them).. also in all fairness, i need to divulge that me and my wife wont be able to handle this “burning of candle at both ends”.. i work for a fairly stable huge tech firm in the US and have more or less a “settled” life with the things that a “typical” mid 30’s guy would hope for.. so with that disclosure :), a few tips to manage stress (primarily what i would have done differently given another chance)

    firstly, everyone has a different coping mechanism.. so pick whatever works for you.

    top priority: health. there is no substitute to being fighting-fit.. over the years, i have gone from someone running 40 miles a week to someone who visited gym twice a month and i hated that transition.. i would give anything to be healthy.. this is a major stress reliever too.. pick anything physically strenuous and dont give up… take your career as a marathon and not a 100 meter dash.. you will be able to finish it only if you are fit

    another must have: relationship and family. no compromises on this one. you can let anything suffer but if the relationship takes a hit, time to pause. always prioritize this over anything else. keep your date nights. get holidays on the calendar and never chicken out of them

    get some distraction: get a pet, be a mentor to a kid, be a volunteer, teach poor kids.. anything that helps you be yourself

    always keep the bigger picture in mind. “in the long run we are all dead”. google “the pale blue dot” and put that picture in your office. Say “this too shall pass” frequently

    read something that is unrelated to work: promise yourself to read a book that is completely random, once a month

    and finally, stop if you are not having fun. you got one life and it is not worth sacrificing on something that doesnt bring smile to your face. own business or not, this job or something else.. nothing matters if you are not having fun.. sooner or later you will burn out and regret not stopping earlier.. so keep “having fun” as a key criteria for deciding anything

    enough of gyan :).. hope you guys are enjoying the journey

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