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Viewpoint / Consumer

Founding Voices: Why Founders Should Prioritize Their Own Needs

Finding Balance When You’re All-in

Founders carry the weight of their companies. You’re always on, expected to be relentlessly energetic and inspiring. And while you’ll savor every victory, the truth is, the road is long, there will be setbacks, and the responsibility is all yours.


“For years I lived in this world where the cliff was always three months away. I mentally got very comfortable with living in the world of immense risk and immense threats.”

Co-founder and CEO, Lyft

In 2015, a group of researchers found that entrepreneurs reported mental health concerns at a significantly higher rate than non-entrepreneurs. Since then, a steady stream of research has confirmed what we already knew: Being a founder is hard.

You need a plan to keep yourself healthy, even if it’s just setting aside time to work out or take a walk for a few minutes each day. Better yet, enlist the support of an executive coach or therapist, or join a roundtable of peers who’ve been there. It’s worth it. To lead at your best, you can’t put your own growth on hold. As Navin Chaddha, who served on the board of Lyft, advised Green, “Companies only grow as fast as their founders, so investing in yourself is crucial.”

Navin Chaddha

Managing Partner

Enterprise, Consumer, Semiconductors

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