While wellness has achieved buzz-level status, fueled by an estimated $1.5 trillion global market, it’s by no means a new concept. Upon its formation in 1948, the World Health Organization defined “health” to include mental and social wellness—not merely the physical.
The wellness trend has brought more light to this facet of overall health. And that’s a good thing.
Global rates of anxiety and depression surged during the pandemic. For entrepreneurs, a group that already reports higher instances of certain mental health issues, the past few years have taken a toll on wellbeing.
Here, we’ll dive into mental health and wellness resources specifically picked for entrepreneurs. Use this list to explore community health services, podcast recommendations, and self-directed wellness strategies.
What is wellness?
Wellness conjures up images of yogi Instagram influencers and tiny $80 bottles of skin oil, but this is merely the commodification of a more basic concept. Put simply, wellness is the state of being well, and includes the act of maintaining healthy habits that care for all facets of well-being, from physical to mental.
According to the National Institute of Health, wellness is commonly split into eight components, or “dimensions of wellness”:
- Intellectual wellness
- Emotional wellness
- Physical wellness
- Occupational wellness
- Financial wellness
- Spiritual wellness
- Social wellness
- Environmental wellness
25+ mental health and wellness resources for entrepreneurs
Busy entrepreneurs often face stress, wearing many hats as they launch and grow businesses, often on their own. Stress is the enemy to wellness, as it often impacts not only mental health but physical as well. Business owners surveyed in one study reported that work-life balance and “more resources” were the top two things they needed to combat stress.
Tap into these resources before stress triggers more serious problems like anxiety or depression. This list contains both free and paid resources to help cope with the pressures of life and running a business.
Community wellness resources
A strong tie to community is often cited as one of the best resources to prevent and manage mental health symptoms. These are incredibly important for entrepreneurs who may lack the built-in networks that often come with typical workplaces. Seek communities that contribute to multiple levels of wellness and offer support through group activities. For example:
- A run club or recreational sports league can help you take care of both your social and physical wellness. Fitness is a key component of overall wellness.
- Mastermind groups or other industry meetups can help you bounce ideas off of pros in your field and will fill your intellectual wellness cup. Check out Shopify Community to meet and chat with other business owners.
- Churches or community centers often offer free or subsidized counseling services and can be a great place to connect socially or spiritually with your local community and combat loneliness.
Articles about health and wellness
There are plenty of resources online to help you learn ways to prioritize your well-being and mental health. Explore a number of Shopify articles to inspire and educate you on everything from sleeping well to managing burnout. Here are a few to get you started:
- 9 Self-Care Strategies for Busy Entrepreneurs
- Feeling Lonely? 10 Ways to Cure the Entrepreneurship Blues
- Getting Unstuck: How to Be Resourceful Through Any Challenge
- My Starting-Over Story: How I Rediscovered Creativity After Trauma
- How To Start Over: 6 Founders Share Their Advice
Apps that promote wellness
Sticking to your wellness goals can be challenging if you don’t have a lot of time or a community to keep you accountable. There are several apps—some free—that can help you develop wellness practices and transform them into healthy habits. Here are a few top-rated wellness apps to get you started:
- Future is a personal training resource and coach in a convenient app. Members get support through a custom workout plan as well as nutrition advice.
- Talkspace is an app that helps busy entrepreneurs access counseling services. It is intended for those unable to attend sessions in person and is a convenient resource.
- AllTrails is an app that helps you find and rate hiking trails in your area. User ratings and reviews help you pick the best hike for your level and needs. Fresh air and exercise are proven to be natural pick-me-ups to combat stress.
- Calm offers guided meditations to help manage challenges like stress and poor sleep quality.
- WaterMinder sends you timely reminders to stay hydrated.
- Pocket Yoga offers yoga practice in a variety of formats and lengths, so entrepreneurs can squeeze some self care into busy days.
- Simple Habit gives you access to coaching, meditation, and therapy sessions, right from your phone.
- Exhale is a wellness app designed specifically for Black women, Indigenous women, and women for color.
Mental health and wellness podcasts
Podcasts and audiobooks can teach you to manage your well-being, get in touch with your mental health, or incorporate wellness practices into your life. For busy entrepreneurs, auditory learning can pair with mundane tasks like driving or housework to maximize your time. Here are some of the top wellness and mental health podcasts:
- The Happiness Lab, which features episodes on topics like burnout, guilt, and grief.
- The Mental Illness Happy Hour, a comedic interview-based podcast on mental health
- Get Sleepy, featuring episodes that tell meditative stories to help with sleep.
- Therapy For Black Girls, a weekly podcast about mental health and personal development.
- Ten Percent Happier, a podcast from the author of the book by the same name, invites guests to talk about focus, sleep, relationships, and more.
- In All Honesty is a podcast about personal development. Host Michelle Elman gives honest advice to help listeners overcome obstacles.
Wellness tools and products
Enterprising founders have jumped on the trend of wellness to offer miracle cures for any ailment. Do your research to ensure that what you’re using and buying has reputable data backing it or extensive user reviews to validate the claims. Of the wellness products on the market, here are a few tried and true goods (all powered by Shopify) to try:
- Aromatherapy can have calming effects, as Monisha Edwards found when she launched Scent & Fire. Try her Cozy Duvet candle to mimic the feeling of being wrapped up in a fresh bed. Or check out natural skin and body products by Venus Williams’ brand, Asutra (we love the lavender Ultimate Relaxation bath salts).
- HidrateSpark is a smart water bottle that pairs with an app to remind you to get your eight glasses a day.
- Get better sleep with products like anti-snore device Smart Nora, Eight Sleep temperature-controlled smart mattresses, or weighted blankets by Gravity Blanket.
- BestSelf sells journals, conversation cards, and activity decks to help you with habit building, gratitude, focus, and building healthy relationships.
- Amidira is a brand of gift boxes designed for those in treatment and recovery for cancer and other illnesses.
Public health care resources
The financial cost of seeking professional mental health and wellness services can be a barrier for many. If you don’t have the benefit of accessing an employee assistance program—as many entrepreneurs will not—the onus is on you to foot the bill for your health care. In many regions, however, there are public programs or social assistance opportunities for those who qualify.
Search for resources in your area similar to these examples:
- NAMI in the US offers a local support group network and helpline.
- If your business has staff, UK-based Mind offers free downloadable wellness action plans to employers.
- Canada offers some free mental health services through Wellness Together Canada.
- Specific government-backed initiatives may apply to you as well. Governments in Canada and the US, for example, offer wellness programs for both Indigenous communities and military veterans.
Put wellness first—your business will thank you
Start your wellness journey by taking time to connect with your emotions and having awareness of the world around you. How can you create space for wellness? Where do you need support?
Your ability to show up for your business, your customers, and your employees relies on your well-being. Carve out time to pay attention to the needs of your body and mind so you’ll have more energy, focus, and support to strive toward your goals.