The Bipolar Entrepreneur

DECEMBER 2, 2017


I’ve been feeling really sorry for myself lately. Being an entrepreneur is hard. Being Bipolar is hard. Being both is just stupid.

So I’ve been throwing several pity parties. Nightly bouts of crying and whining about how much my life sucks and how no one else’s life sucks as much as mine. Some would call it “Bitching,” but I prefer “creative complaining.”

You see, being Bipolar means life has severe ups and downs. Being an entrepreneur means waking up every morning questioning every decision you’ve ever made. Just kidding, being an entrepreneur means overcoming challenges and remaining confident in the face of instability.

Ahh, instability. My favorite foe. My frienemy. My Jim Halpert to my Dwight Schrute.

On one hand, by little Bipolar brain is all about instability. The waves feel familiar. When I’m up and business is going well, it’s EXCITING AND INVIGORATING AND OMG THERE ARE SO MANY OPPORTUNITIES WHAT WILL COME NEXT WHAT IS BEHIND THAT DOOR WHAT AM I DOING SORRY I’M YELLING. And when I’m down and my business is tanking, it’s exhausting….overwhelming…discouraging… scary…and icky.

I match my environment. I feel the depressive feelings when things are depressive and happy feelings when things are happy. Granted, it’s a bit extreme, but the ups and downs of entrepreneurship fit my personality like a glove.

On the other hand, my darling manic-depressive demeanor despises instability. It’s desperately searching for equilibrium and my fluctuating business will not allow for such things. I get momentarily reprieves for about a day or so when things seem like they may be ok, but then something is on fire and I’m on fire and everyone is on fire and this actually hell oh lord save me.

So how do I handle it?

  1. I don’t.

What a list, wow, so much advice.

Here’s the point. I don’t handle it. I can’t handle it. Instead, I have to create space for it. I throw down anchors for when a wave is about to crash. I grit my teeth knowing the eventual smooth waters will seem just as endless as the current storm. I hold on to what I know to be true.


“I throw down anchors for when a wave is about to crash.”

I am an adventurous spirit intended for rough waters. I can see the shore but I choose to sail away. All of this is my choice. Pursuing a risky career and acknowledging my Bipolar is my choice.

I could very easily ignore the call of the wild and box up my mental health problems. It would be easy and it would make sense. And you know what? It would also be easier to explain. It would be easier to talk about.

So yes, I feel sorry for myself. And yes, I admire my choices and my strength. So yes, I’m throwing pity parties, because you know what? Parties are fun. And if I’m going to deal with all this crap, then I might as well enjoy myself.

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