Entrepreneurs are in the energy management business, both their own as well as others’, and it can be exhausting… but maybe not for the reasons you think.

In my opinion, the traditional sources of exhaustion are present for the entrepreneur, family, work, social, fitness, etc., but there is one more hidden factor that I think may be somewhat unique:

Uncertainty intersecting responsibility

What the heck does that mean?!?

By definition, the entrepreneurial journey is lonely and tough sometimes. We’ve already established that.

But one of the reasons it is hard is because we have to call all the shots (or at least, we’re responsible for the outcomes) and we don’t have a great circle to help guide us to those decisions. Oftentimes, no great sounding board inside the company.

Now factor in uncertainty.

We are almost always making decisions with incomplete information.

In a vacuum.

By feel.

Or sheer gut instinct from experience.

Not knowing all the details and owning the outcomes can be challenging, energizing, and fun even!

Single decisions can be make or break, and often we are on our own.


But exhausting.

It also leads us down a bunch of trial and error-type paths.


Lots of experiments… you know the drill.

Many of us get accused of being “flavor of the week” decision makers and thinkers, and I believe this is part of why that happens.

We have to try lots of stuff, as oftentimes there is no roadmap, and as we know, no one to consult with.

So we end up throwing spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks, which is again… exhausting.

I guess my takeaway is to be aware of energy levels, and know when to rev the engine, as well as when to take a rest.

Honor the privilege and the challenge of living in this constant state of uncertainty, but also give yourself time to reset and reflect. 


Go easy on yourself when the decisions aren’t the best.

Acknowledge you are one person and can’t do it all.

And most importantly: surround yourself with others who are in the same boat, so at least you feel a little less alone.



Founder of the align5 Companies,  CEO of Scaling Up Coaches, and Serial Entrepreneur

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