Entrepreneurs are notoriously driven. We are laser-focused souls, keen on achieving our objectives and willing to overcome mountains of challenges in order to do so. And while the rigors and joys of entrepreneurship ebb and flow throughout the lifecycle of a business, we’re all too familiar with periods of tremendous stress and moments when it’s unclear how we will bounce back from the latest challenge.
Having a healthy outlet for stress release is critical to coming back recharged day after day.
For me, this has always been taking part in endurance fitness events such as triathlons, running races or cycling trips. And yet several years ago, I found myself literally physically broken after sustaining a cycling accident with a driver who ran a red light. With a fractured hip and elbow and in the midst of one of our busiest times in business, I quickly found myself without my traditional outlet to restore my balance.
And yet, when I look back on the accident, I can’t help but find the silver lining in the incident. Why?
First and foremost, it spurred the initial idea for my current venture, This App Saves Lives, a mobile app-based solution that rewards drivers who drive undistracted.
Secondly, not being able to go for a run, a bike ride or a swim forced me to invest in habits and hobbies that I had previously neglected. Outside of work hours, I found myself pouring through volumes of books – many were educational but some were fiction – and I quickly fell in love with getting lost in a book.
Reading also rekindled my love of writing and I began crafting short journal entries about my experiences as an entrepreneur which I later published in my first book.
I spent more time with my family, my friends and of course my wife. When my recovery allowed me to, I began walking the streets of New York City to explore new locales or simply to “people watch”. I took note of unique cultural interactions and got to know people on a deeper level simply because I had more time to do so.
Having an outlet has always enabled me to balance my work energy and recharge my batteries but I never fully understood how varying such outlets can result in intellectual development and an overall appreciation for many of the people, places and things we take for granted.
How have outlets played a role in your own endeavors?