Five ways to avoid burnout as a SaaS founder2 min read

Copy of S18 top marketing sessions

Being a first-time startup founder can be a lonely journey, especially if long-time friends and peers have taken a more conventional career path. And 2020 has been particularly demanding: in May 2020 Blind found that 73% of surveyed tech workers are burnt out, thanks to a combination of working longer hours, working from home, not taking paid time off, and increased anxiety levels.

At SaaStock we’re committed to helping SaaS founders gain traction, grow and scale their startups – but not at all costs. This blog post shares advice from other startup founders from around the world, on how to stay healthy and sane on this journey. It covers five main areas that we hear startup founders talk about as important for battling burnout:

  1. Physical health
  2. Mental health
  3. Personal relationships
  4. Professional relationships
  5. Sleep and rest

What is burnout?

How can you tell if you’re feeling a normal level of founder stress, or if you’ve tipped over into burnout territory? Psychologist Christina Maslach, states that burnout consists of three distinct components:

  • Exhaustion: You’re wiped out emotionally, physically, or cognitively (or all of the above). Even rest or sleep don’t help you feel replenished.
  • Cynicism: You bring a sour attitude to the office each day. You aren’t engaged with your work, and you often feel irritated, short-tempered, and detached from your team.
  • Inefficacy: You feel like you can never keep up with the demands of the workplace, despite the fact that you know you were skilled at doing so in the past. 

Joel Gascoigne, CEO of Buffer, wrote extensively of his experience with burnout as a startup founder in 2017:

“This is how I’d describe my experience of burnout: I lost motivation. I just didn’t care. I knew I cared deeply, but I had nothing left. I couldn’t get up in the morning. I felt very sensitive and emotional. It was like anything could set me off, and make me well up. I cried a lot, by myself and with people close to me.”

Sound familiar? We hope not. But if you are recognising some of your feelings in any of the above, in the next sections of this post we’re sharing five crucial areas of focus when battling and preventing burnout for startup founders – and even your employees.

Want to read the rest of this exclusive post? You’re just 5 seconds away…



Sign up to our newsletter

LATEST | POSTS

Posted in
Podcast Banner (Landscape) (13)

Charting the Journey of Paddle from Zero to $10mill ARR, with Christian Owens, Paddle

Christian Owens, CEO of Paddle, is this week’s guest on our Zero to Ten series, on The SaaS Revolution Show. In this episode of our podcast, Christian shares his journey to achieving $10mill ARR, and more. Watch now, or listen to the audio-only version below: Listen now:

Podcast Banner (Landscape) (14)

Charting the Journey of Dixa from Zero to $10mill ARR, with Mads Fosselius, Dixa

Mads Fosselius, CEO of Dixa, is this week’s guest on our brand new series, Zero to Ten, on The SaaS Revolution Show. In this series, we chart the journey of a company or a founder from zero to ten million in ARR. In the first episode of this series, Mads shares his journey from a…

Podcast Banner (Landscape) (9)

The Challenges & Opportunities of Moving from Market Disruptor to Category Creator, with Didier Elzinga & Roli Saxena (Culture Amp)

Didier Elzinga (Founder & CEO) and Roli Saxena (Board Member) at Culture Amp, are this week’s guests on The SaaS Revolution Show. This is a session from SaaStock Remote 2021. In the foundational years of SaaS unicorn Culture Amp, Didier Elzinga – CEO and founder – heard a lot of “no’s”. The HR category was…