Feeling exhausted, stressed and unable to think straight? If you’re a start-up that could be because of the phenomenal hours you’re working and the little time you have available to unwind. On average, start-up founders work 64 hours a week, with 40% working seven days a week, according to first-of-kind research undertaken by KPMG Australia’s High Growth Ventures. The research, of 70 start-up founders, found two-thirds of founders (66%) reported feeling very or extremely stressed, and 57% said their stress has a large impact on the ability of their start-up to succeed. A significant majority of founders (70%) draw less salary than in their previous role, and some reported that personal financial worries were affecting their family relationships. Amanda Price, Head of KPMG Australia High Growth Ventures commented: “Founders play a key role in driving innovation, taking massive risks, both personal and financial, to solve industry problems and build global businesses… A founder’s individual performance is one of the critical factors to the success or failure of their business.” How can you maintain your mental health under stress? According to the research founders found it hard to find the time to exercise and felt that this decline in their physical activity had adversely impacted their business. 88% acknowledged that their physical wellbeing had a direct impact on their start-up. Yet only 26% of founders reported being able to devote more than four hours per week to physical activity. Unsurprisingly, 43% were unhappy with their level of fitness. Exercise is important for your physical and mental health because it stimulates chemicals like endorphins and serotonin that improve your mood and increases the size of the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for memory. Exercise also improves learning, clarity of thought and sleep which can all be disrupted during times of high stress. Even if you are incredibly busy, it’s a great idea to squeeze 30 minutes of moderate to intensive physical activity into your day on most days of the week – even if it’s in shorter bursts of 10 to 15 minutes at a time. By investing this time in your body and mind, you’re bound to reap the benefits in business success too. Reduce your stress At Ayers Group we can take the burden of payroll, tax and super compliance off your shoulders. If you’re looking for specific talents not available in Australia, we can also help you arrange visa sponsorship, leaving you free to innovate and grow your business. Call an Ayers Group expert today.