Why Entrepreneurs Are Happier

Studies show entrepreneurs are happier..

There are many struggles that can come with being an entrepreneur: constant pressure, long hours, financial insecurity, the never ending need to find new clients or retain the ones you have, or perhaps lack of insurance to name just a few.  If you are in the process of starting your own business, you are probably familiar with some if not all of these.  But don’t despair!  Studies show that starting your own business is likely to make you a happier person!


In a study of 2,000 business owners and employees by Axa Business Insurance, it was found that though business owners spent almost twice as much time as employees thinking about work when they were away from the office, they are also three times more likely to report satisfaction with their jobs. And In a paper titled “Life satisfaction and self-employment: a matching approach”, Alex Coad and Martin Binder noted: “In our analysis we found that individuals moving from regular employment into self-employment … experience a positive and significant increase in life satisfaction, that actually increases from the first year of self-employment to the second.”


One factor contributing to this happiness? Entrepreneurs are more likely than other workers to report that they learned or did something new in the past day.  “The same intellectual curiosity and energy needed to start and run a business may also drive entrepreneurs to seek out and take advantage of opportunities to learn or do something interesting or exciting on a regular basis,” said Dan Witters, Sangeeta Agrawal and Alyssa Brown of Gallup, which conducted the research. “Entrepreneurs also have creative and strategic control of their business and manage their own schedule to execute on their business plan. Thus, they may have more flexibility to pursue interesting and exciting learning opportunities and activities than other workers.”


What do you think?  Despite the additional worry and stress, do you ever regret your decision to strike out on your own and make a go of it?  Do you find that on balance you are more satisfied than you were as an employee?  If you work at home, do you miss an office environment?  I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject!

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  1. Great article!
    And you’re right, the creative process is the most rewarding part of my week–I can really focus on that part of my business in a way that makes sense for me and for my clients. It’s a constant stress running my own business, but that’s part of what drives me every day. I do miss interactions with colleagues, but I incorporated G+ hangouts into my client training and staff meetings a few months ago, and it’s made all the difference. I could never go back to a traditional office setting. This is what works best for me.

  2. There’s not a day I regret being an entrepreneur. I’ve been at it nearly 15 years and my company is thriving and growing. I’ve never had a year with a loss or a backwards step. What I especially enjoy about being an entrepreneur is that I get to try all my ideas and create materials and products exactly as I’d like to use them. That freedom has helped me stay stimulated and engaged in my work. The rewards far outweigh the stress. I look forward to work, and I don’t mind working extra. Work = satisfaction.

  3. Great article Molly!

    8 months in and I have no regrets at all about starting my own business, it is the best decision I could have ever made. While I do work longer hours now than I did when I was an employee, I don’t mind at all because I am working for myself and I know that I am in control of my own success and I really appreciate all my hard work!

    I will say that it can be stressful at times not being able to take a vacation or sick day without missing pay, and not having insurance makes me very mindful of my health, the freedom of being my own boss, choosing who I work with and what I do is priceless!

  4. The stresses you describe are very real, but the joy of independence makes it worthwhile. I agree about the constant learning that takes place, and how that also creates pleasure. Freedom and constant learning are not things 9-5 jobs offer.

  5. Such a great article! Poigant and honest! I chose to leave the workforce because I wanted autonomy. I was able to build a business and infuse what I liked the most into it: collaboration, innovation, and business. I am able to implement my ideas, my vision, without needing to go through the crippling “chain of command”. That has to be the most beloved aspect of entrepreneurship!

  6. Hi ladies – thank you for all of your comments! I’m so sorry to be so long in replying. It has been a while since I wrote this post, but I still feel the same way I did then – I love, love, love being an entrepreneur, even on the stressful days!

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