How to Combat the Loneliness of Entrepreneurship With a Work Family

One of the biggest challenges faced by entrepreneurs, small business owners, and solo practitioners is the inherent loneliness factor that often comes with going at it alone. Professionals who are their own boss, as well as many employees who work remotely, are often a party of one most workdays, with their day-to-day social interaction frequently limited to screens.

Recent studies on remote and hybrid work, such as social media management platform Buffer’s 2022 State of Remote Work, have spotlighted these struggles, naming the inability to separate life and work and feelings of loneliness or isolation as the top two drawbacks of working solo from a home office.

Entrepreneurs, small business owners, and solo practitioners have a lot in common with remote workers. All could benefit from more opportunities for community building, such as making meaningful in-person connections with like-minded professionals that are known to broaden horizons and build communities. 

The fact that those who blaze their own trails have a different mindset than most people can add to their feelings of isolation. Often friends and family members can’t relate to an entrepreneur’s singular journey. These professionals in particular need a network of other entrepreneurial types to gain insight, to source leads, to tap into positive reinforcement, and to find creative solutions to problems.

You’ve Got a Friend

Having strong relationships in the workplace directly impacts performance, studies show. A survey by employee engagement platform Officevibe, found that 70% of workers say that having friends at work is the most crucial element in a happy work environment and make them more engaged and productive. 

For many, work is where they conduct the majority of their social interaction. So, how can entrepreneurs, small business owners, and solo practitioners replicate the convivial and supportive feeling of an office environment when they’re going it alone?

Coworking Is Synonymous with Community   

The global pandemic has forever changed the way many people do their jobs. Not only has remote and hybrid work become omnipresent, but a record number of people also started their own businesses in the past two-plus years.

These historic developments have contributed to a surge in the popularity of coworking spaces across the globe. The Global Coworking Growth Study estimated that approximately five million people will be working from coworking spaces by 2024, an increase of 158 percent compared to 2020. It seems more workers across industries and professional levels are craving the connection, collaboration, and community support coworking spaces provide.

Coworking spaces equip entrepreneurs, small business owners, and solo practitioners with the benefits of a traditional office plus added business support and built-in technology, all without the expense or liability of a long-term commitment. Perhaps best of all, these flexible workplaces offer access to other professionals, a sense of community, and a spirit of collaboration that allows them to take their business in new directions. 

The Immeasurable Value of Human Connection

The spark of human connection that happens when people come together for a common purpose — in this case, making their entrepreneurial dreams come true — can’t be replicated when working completely in isolation.

Finding and fostering a community of like-minded individuals — those with an entrepreneurial streak much like your own — supports entrepreneurs, small business owners, and solo practitioners in numerous ways, from expanding their networks to improving their mindsets for better business outcomes and more personal fulfillment.

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