Self-Employment Related Burnout and Lack of Sleep | Sip2Sleep®

Self-Employment Related Burnout and Lack of Sleep

Entrepreneurship and small business ownership has been on the rise in recent years, and really skyrocketed during the COVID pandemic. However, we are now in an era when burnout related to self-employment is reaching an all-time high. It is reported by Simply Business that 33 percent of small business owners in the U.K. get under five hours of sleep per night—which is much less than the recommended eight hours for most adults. The reason? According to the survey, they are burdened with worries about the future of their business. Simply Business says the country is under a mental health crisis amongst the self-employed, with half of participants saying they have had poor mental health in the last year. These statistics might be from across the pond, but they echo what is also happening in the U.S.
Getting just five hours of sleep per night, especially consistently, is a big concern. Most adults need about 7 – 9 hours of sleep per night (we need a little less sleep as we get older). However, when you’re worried about the financial health of your business, it can be tough to get the sleep you need. The survey reports that financial worries are the cause of lack of sleep for 43 percent of business owners. Plus, 33 percent say they routinely worry about their business at night. If you don’t get the sleep you need, this is going to lead to a myriad of issues including, possibly, anxiety, depression, and inability to perform your best.

What Fuels Burnout?

Burnout is an umbrella term that can be caused by a variety of issues—including stress, lack of sleep, and constant worrying. It is reported that almost 60 percent of self-employed adults in the U.K. have anxiety while 38 percent have depression and 22 percent “feel lonely.” This might be relatively common in the world of small business ownership, but it doesn’t make it healthy. Plus, in addition to not getting enough sleep, many respondents said that they simply can’t take time off. This is going to further exacerbate sleep issues and well-being.
In total, 73 percent said they take less than 20 days off of work per year (which might sound like a lot by U.S. standards—but that’s another issue). About 40 percent say that they would not take time off “just” to deal with poor mental health, even though they admit it would ultimately benefit them and their business in the long run. Hustle culture is still strong around the globe, and the detrimental effects are starting to show. But what is being done about it? Research has shown that 90 percent of people in the U.K. don’t think the government is pulling its weight to support mental health, particularly among the self-employed. They say they can’t get the same rights as regular employees for holiday entitlement. Given that the U.K. and Europe typically has a healthier approach to holidays and time off than the U.S., it can be deduced that the state of mental health in American self-employed adults is even worse.

Work, Sleep, Health

According to the COO of Simply Business,
The long hours, rare breaks, and sleepless nights are leaving many on the brink of burnout … the self-employed are working at capacity. And the situation should concern us all. Small businesses are vital to both our economic recovery and the prosperity of our communities, and this will only compound the challenges of an increasingly economically inactive population. From financial worries and stress, to isolation and insomnia—it’s critical that the real people behind the country’s SMEs are given the support they need.
Avoiding burnout takes work and commitment to self-care. Bear in mind that depression and anxiety are linked to insomnia, creating a bi-directional and vicious cycle. Many people are reaching for prescription or over the counter sleep aids, but those can have side effects and create dependency. It’s critical that any mental health condition be treated by a professional, but there are also natural ways you can improve your sleep, such as drinking Sip2Sleep®. It’s made with tart cherry extract and Venetron® to organically reduce inflammation and anxiety. It’s the perfect night cap to replace a cocktail or late-night espresso.
Back to blog