At some point in their lives, many business owners tend to feel guilty about the way they manage their lives. So, if you have been feeling entrepreneur guilt, you are not alone. You may think that you do not spend much time with your loved ones or you do not work hard enough. Holding on to guilt can put your business in jeopardy. 

You have to let go of your guilt and focus more on self-improvement. Guilt often prevents an entrepreneur from taking important steps. Once you release your guilt, you can think more clearly, procrastinate less, and make better choices. 

In this article, you will learn about different types of entrepreneur guilt and how they affect your business. Later, I will discuss how to manage your guilt and grow your business. 

Types Of Guilt An Entrepreneur May Feel

There are different types of guilt that entrepreneurs feel. Guilt can make you feel unworthy and frustrated. Here are some of the common guilt feelings business owners feel:

Not Being Dedicated To Work

Your business is your income source. Hence, you spend time on your business. You work hard not just for the money, but also to have a purpose in life. Many people get addicted to their work and always look forward to working on different projects. 

However, there are days when you cannot work. You might get sick, spend time with family or friends, or go on a vacation. You may face technical problems or have little work to do. For many people, not working for a few days is not a great experience. 

You may feel guilty, thinking you are slacking off or not doing enough for the growth of the business. As a result, you can not even relax during vacations or family time. 

Not Spending Time With Loved Ones

There are times when your business may take up most of your time. It requires your full attention. Thus, you cannot give full attention to your personal life. 

Your family or friends may even complain about that. Consequently, you feel guilty for not socializing. This guilt can even develop without others pointing it out. 

Parent Guilt

If you have children, no doubt they are precious to you. When you get busy with work, you may miss their special days, like school functions or appointments with doctors. It is understandable that you feel guilty. You even think you are neglecting your child. Thus, entrepreneurs often feel guilty about being negligent parents. 

Guilt Of Failure 

Everyone makes mistakes. You may have made mistakes in business that have caused inconvenience to your clients. You may feel embarrassed, which leads to guilt. This kind of guilt is dangerous for a person’s self-confidence. You may constantly think about your mistakes and blame yourself. 

Guilt Of Success

This is a unique kind of feeling. Many successful entrepreneurs may feel their success is harming others. They feel guilty for getting more than others. These people may even think they are not worthy of their success. You may even feel guilty about spending money for your pleasure because you feel you are wasting it while others struggle. 


How Guilt Hampers Your Work

Guilt does not remain as a simple thought in your mind. It will reflect on your behavior and affect your business. Here is how guilt can prevent your business from progressing:

  • Because of guilt, you may spend more than necessary time with your friends and family putting off important work.
  • When you feel guilty for being successful and getting more opportunities, your guilt may lead you to sit back and let others try their luck kind of attitude. As a result, your business could fall behind and remain inactive. 
  • Because of guilt, you may give opportunities to unqualified people to work for you. You may find it difficult to say no to others. Others may take advantage of this. 
  • When you feel guilty for your past mistakes, you may try to avoid the same situation in the future. Eventually, people can lose confidence and get nervous about facing new challenges. In the process, they miss great business opportunities. 
  • You may work more than you should out of guilt and a sense of obligation to the company. Overwork can make you stressed and burned out. Thus, you won’t be able to focus on your business and end up making poor decisions that hamper it.


How To Release Guilt And Grow In Business?

The motivation to do something meaningful keeps entrepreneurs moving forward. Thus, the constant feeling of guilt can be the worst thing to happen to a business owner. If you want to move on with your business, you must learn to manage guilt. You may have already felt how your business and personal life are suffering because of it. 

So, here is how you can manage your guilt as an entrepreneur and grow your business: 

  • Acknowledge that you have an entrepreneur’s guilt. Everyone feels guilty at some point in their lives, and it is sometimes okay to feel that way.  
  • You may think you are not working hard every day for your business. For that, make a list of things you should do in a week, create a routine and stick to it. Occasionally, you may not have any work to do. So, it is okay to get out of your office.
  • Vacations, spending time with family or friends, and attending various occasions are part of your social life. But there is no need to attend all the programs and meetings to prove yourself to others. 
  • Some days, your business may require more attention. Explain this to your family and friends. If they are supportive, they will understand. 
  • You may have made a few mistakes that have cost you good fortune. Instead of blaming yourself, reflect on your past mistakes to understand what you could have done better. Train yourself not to repeat the same mistakes.
  • As time goes by, your friend circle can change. You may not be a part of all their activities all the time. If they constantly guilt shame you about it, it’s time to let them go. 
  • Your business is important to you. So, you do not have to feel guilty talking about it off duty. Find a new group of people with whom you can discuss your business ideas. They can help you get over your guilt and keep you motivated. 
  • Finally, tell yourself that your success is not an obstacle to others. You have worked hard to get where you are now, and you deserve success. There is nothing to feel guilty about. 

When you let go of your guilt, you regain control over your mind. It will be easy to focus on your business without constantly thinking about socializing. On the other hand, you can enjoy yourself better on vacation and during personal time with your loved ones. 

Spending a few days away from work can refresh your mind. Thus, you can see things from a new perspective when you return to work. 

Once you let go of your guilt from past mistakes, you become ready to face new challenges. You will become more motivated and confident in your abilities. Hence, you will not hesitate to try new opportunities. 



By now, you must have learned how guilt can affect a business and how you can manage it. When entrepreneurs suffer mentally because of guilt, their businesses suffer as well. Therefore, you must release your guilt to focus on growing your business.  

If you want to know more about entrepreneurship and business, check out Campfire Capitalism Podcasts where we talk about creating effective business strategies for success.