For the whom the fail tolls: Getting real about the emotional impact of startup failure on founders

Throughout the multiple decades I’m spent in the startup world, the idea of starting your own company has moved from obscurity to a cornerstone of popular culture — and modern day entertainment. But there is one thing — for those in the thick of it — that hasn’t changed: starting a company is incredibly difficult. And emotionally draining. But that’s not something that’s often part of the pop culture conversation.

That’s why I’m always heartened by founders who have the courage to be open about their journey. And the downsides. Like Portland founder and Techstars alum Josh Carter who had the wherewithal released a missive he composed a while ago. About his struggle as a founder who failed.

And, more importantly, an insight into the modern founder existence:

We do not spend enough time talking about the mental impact that goes along with being a founder. It took me a long time to come to the conclusion that I was depressed. Deeply depressed. Dangerously depressed. I had to be honest and mindful about my own feelings and find a way to get out of it. It’s not easy. I honestly still struggle with the feeling of emptiness and failure. I don’t know that I will ever shake that feeling. I just know that I have a wonderful network of people who I call friends and family who remind me that I am loved.

If you’re a founder, it’s worth a read. If you’re thinking about starting a company, it should be required reading.

For more, visit Failing and Other Uplifting Anecdotes.