Mental Health and Self-Employment: Resilience is Everything

Time to read: 2 mins.

I train people how to be more resilient. How to apply specific techniques to their lives to help them cope, flourish, prosper. Every time I deliver the training I learn something myself, something new I hadn’t thought of before and how I can apply it to my own life.

The interesting thing is that it’s never been more important than right now in my daily life of self-employment. Everyone says self-employment is tough but all worth it. What I wasn’t prepared for was what a rollercoaster it would be.

There are days when it feels like everything is going so well. My business is growing, lots of people want to work with me, lots of people have HEARD of me! Then seemingly without warning it goes quiet. People are busy. They have so many other priorities that mental health training slips down the list into oblivion. I should have been prepared for that. After all, I’ve been that busy person, trying to juggle a thousand plates where the things you really care about have to be balanced against so many other essential priorities. Its tough. I get it. It’s one of the reasons I wanted to BE self-employed!

So now, here I am at the other end. Knowing, it is the worst time of year for anyone to want to book mental health training (although I bet it would really help right now. Mindfulness anyone?!)

I’m trying to look beyond what I can or should be DOING and actually I’m trying to think more about those resilience skills and consider how I can work with how things are.

I read a great article the other day about considering who or what you invest your time in and how this inevitably shapes who you are and who you become. It pointed out how we are tending more and more to let our minds be filled with the content of Facebook algorithms and how much of this is actually pointless, yet habitual. Every moment spent on Facebook could be time spent learning from people in history who have made a difference, who have something important to say. It could be an investment into something better.

And talking of training, I’ve also remembered one of the most important skills in building resilience is learning. You only become good at what you keep practicing at. So that’s what I’m doing: I’m learning to be good at being self-employed. I’m learning to work with the reality of how things are whilst still believing in what I’m doing. I’m also learning that if one day is difficult, many others are very exciting and busy!

If you’ve read this far in the article – then thank you. I’d appreciate your advice on being self-employed and how to make it work. What were the key things you learnt along the way? What might you have done differently? What was unexpected?

What I do know is that what I am doing is important and I don’t think I’m alone in that. Every day brings unique surprises and I am taking pathways I hadn’t imagined. To a degree the business has a life of it’s own as to where it is going. That’s incredibly exciting, humbling and a reminder that I want this for the long haul.

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